Laura Gaynon is an active performer of both modern and baroque cello based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Described as "stunning" by the SF Examiner, Laura has performed with the American Bach Soloists, with the un-conducted orchestra One Found Sound & as a founding member of the baroque chamber ensemble MUSA.
Laura has degrees from Yale University and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where she graduated with an Master of Music in cello performance & an Artist Certificate in Chamber Music as a student of Jennifer Culp. She earned an added emphasis in Historical Performance through her studies with baroque cellist and viola da gambist Elisabeth Reed and harpsichordist Corey Jamason, and in 2013 won the Baroque Concerto Competition. Other important mentors include George Neikrug, Ole Akahoshi, Carolina Singer, Mikhail Gelfandbein, Irene Sharp, and members of the Brentano, Cleveland, St. Lawrence, Shanghai, St. Petersburg and Borromeo String Quartets.
As a chamber musician, she has collaborated with Kim Kashkashian, Krista Bennion-Feeney, Geoff Nuttall, Bonnie Hampton, Paul Hersh, and Ian Swensen. She is Artistic Director of Bay Area Concerts at Home, a chamber music series around the Bay Area.
Recent festivals include: The American Bach Soloists Academy, Toronto Summer Music Festival, Taos School of Music, the St. Lawrence String Quartet Seminar and the 2012 International Piatigorsky Cello Masterclasses at USC.
"My greatest teachers have been my music teachers. They taught me to push past seemingly insurmountable obstacles with hard work & intuition and the meaning of patience. They gave me other musicians to play with, many of whom have become lifelong friends & taught me skills that give me deep self-confidence."
A devoted teacher herself, Laura has an active studio in San Francisco and enjoys being a music missionary to schools with ever-diminishing music programs. She’s joined Chamber Music by the Bay to perform and teach at public schools & worked with Music Beyond the Chamber bringing concerts, masterclasses and presentations to Portland & the San Francisco Bay Area. She also adores coaching at her orchestra alma mater, the Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra (PACO).
Outside of music, Laura's most prized accomplishment is completing a cross-continent bicycle trip, from Connecticut to Portland because, in her words, "I don't know how I'm still alive." She would love to bike the perpendicular path from Canada to Mexico if someone would just carry her luggage.
My primary aim is to foster a love of learning & a love of music in each of my students. Caring gives life meaning. By teaching real skills & the art of musical interpretation illuminated with enthusiasm, I hope to give my students the experience of caring so deeply about their music that they grow to become motivated artists and citizens.