Commissions and premieres of new works for Lara have come from composers Mohammed Fairouz, David Sanford, Benny Golson, and Eve Beglarian, among others. Lara’s solo recordings have met with tremendous critical and popular acclaim. Her debut CD, Invitation to the Dance (2000), was called "magical" by NPR, and her second release, American Ballads (2001), was ranked by Amazon among the best recordings of American concert music ever made. Dream of Me (2006), was praised for "exquisite sensitivity" by American Record Guide. 13 Ways of Looking at the Goldberg (2011) was called “addicting” by the Huffington Post, and “magnificent and different” by Sequenza 21.
Her chart-topping new release, Exiles’ Café (2013), featured as CD of the Week by radio stations from WQXR New York to KDFC San Francisco, was called “ravishing” by Fanfare Magazine. She is regularly heard nationwide on radio programs including NPR Performance Today, WNYC New Sounds, WFMT Impromptu, TPR Classical Spotlight and WWFM Cadenza. Lara's busy performance career is strongly driven by her commitment to expanding and developing new audiences for the arts. She is the Founder and President of the 88 KEYS® Foundation, a non-profit organization that fosters opportunities for music experiences and learning in America's public schools, and she regularly works and performs with the next generation of talented young musicians as Artistic Director of the Young Artists program at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, UC Davis, where she serves as Artist in Residence.
Lara is Founder and Director of The Artist Sessions, San Francisco. Lara Downes is a Steinway Artist. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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|I Cover the Waterfront (arr. J. Distler for piano)|
|George Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue (Live in Concert)|
|Blue Moon (arr. T. Wilson for piano)|