An ICS biography

Paul Katz

Paul Katz is known to concertgoers around the world as the cellist of the Cleveland Quartet. As a member of this celebrated ensemble from 1969-1995, he appeared in all of the music capitals, great concert halls and music festivals of the world. The Cleveland Quartet also performed at the White House and on television shows including CBS Sunday Morning, NBC’s Today Show, and the Grammy Awards (the first classical musicians ever to appear on that show), and was the subject of a one-hour documentary, In The Mainstream: The Cleveland Quartet, televised across the USA and Canada. In addition to his duties as a member of the quartet, Mr. Katz has appeared as a soloist in New York, Cleveland, Toronto, Detroit, Los Angeles, and other cities throughout North America.

Of special interest to cellists are Mr. Katz’s recordings of the Dohnanyi Cello Sonata with pianist Barry Snyder for Pro Arte Records and the Cleveland Quartet’s recording on Sony Classical of the Schubert cello quintet with Yo-Yo Ma. The Cleveland Quartet has nearly 70 recordings to its credit on RCA Victor, Telarc International, Sony, Philips and Pro Arte. These recordings have earned many distinctions including the all-time best-selling chamber music release of Japan, Grammy Awards for Best Chamber Music Recording and Best Recorded Contemporary Composition in 1996, and a Best of the Year Award from Stereo Review.

Mr. Katz was a student of Gregor Piatigorsky, Janos Starker, Bernard Greenhouse, Leonard Rose and Gabor Rejto. In 1962 he was selected to play in the historic Pablo Casals Master Class in Berkeley, California. While in his 20s he was a prize-winner in the Munich and Geneva Competitions and for three summers a participant at Rudolf Serkin’s Marlboro Music Festival.

In 1996 Mr. Katz was appointed professor of cello and chamber music at the Shepherd School of Music of Rice University in Houston, following 20 years of teaching at the Eastman School of Music. He has mentored some of today’s most successful young string quartets, and among his students are principal chairs in major international orchestras from Oslo, Norway, to Osaka, Japan, and members of American symphony orchestras such as Chicago, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, St. Louis and the National Symphony. He has taught at many of the major summer music programs including 20 years at the Aspen Festival, and is director of the Shouse Artist Institute of the Great Lakes Chamber Festival. He frequently sits on the juries of international cello and chamber music competitions, most recently the 1997 Leonard Rose International Cello Competition, the 1998 Banff International String Quartet Competition, and the international quartet competitions of London and Munich in 2000.

Mr. Katz plays an Andrea Guarneri cello dated 1669.