Stephen Geber

Stephen Geber, the longest-serving principal cellist in the history of The Cleveland Orchestra, served for 30 seasons in that post from 1973 until 2003. Born in Los Angeles into a family of professional cellists, he studied cello with his mother, Gretchen Geber, as well as with Gabor Rejto, Stephen Deák, Ronald Leonard, and Zara Nelsova. He graduated from the Eastman School of Music in 1965 with a bachelor of music degree and a performer's certificate. While at Eastman, he was a member of the Rochester Philharmonic, and prior to joining The Cleveland Orchestra as a principal cellist in 1973, he was a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and a faculty member of the New England Conservatory of Music.

With the Cleveland Orchestra, Mr. Geber has been featured as a soloist in two world premieres and three Cleveland premieres. In 1998, he gave the world-premiere performance of Samuel Adler's Cello Concerto with the Eastman Philharmonia under Christoph von Dohnányi's direction. The concerto was commissioned by the Eastman School of Music in honor of Mr. Geber, who received Eastman's Alumni Achievement Award during the concert.

In addition to his frequent performances as featured soloist with The Cleveland Orchestra, Mr. Geber has been a guest soloist with orchestras throughout the United States, including the Boston Pops, Dallas Symphony, Eastman-Rochester Symphony, and the Florida Orchestra. He has collaborated in chamber music with a number of leading artists, including Vladimir Ashkenazy, Julius Baker, Rudolf Firkusny, Grant Johannesen, Yo-Yo Ma, and Lorin Maazel, and has performed with the Emerson, American, and Cavani string quartets.

Regarded as one of the leading cello teachers in this country, Mr. Geber heads the cello departments of the Cleveland Institute of Music and Kent/Blossom Music, and is a faculty member of New World Symphony in Miami, Florida. Former students of Mr. Geber hold positions in nearly all of the major American orchestras, and in several leading chamber ensembles. He has taught masterclasses throughout North America, Europe, and Eastern Asia. In 1994, he taught and performed in the Georg Solti Orchestral Project at Carnegie Hall, which brought together talented young musicians and principal players from major American orchestras. The following year, Mr. Geber was one of four Cleveland Orchestra principal players chosen to lead their respective sections in an orchestra assembled under Solti's direction for a special concert in Geneva, Switzerland, to honor the 50th anniversary of the United Nations.

In August 2003, Shar Music Company released his CD recording of 18 prominent orchestral cello solos. In 2007, Stephen Geber was appointed to the advisory council of Chamber Music Two at Lincoln Center. In 2008, he received the prestigious Eva Janzer Award from Indiana University. This is given in recognition for lifetime contributions to cello performance and teaching.

Mr. Geber is married to Lisa Wellbaum, principal harp for The Cleveland Orchestra, and he is the father of four daughters.

Ovation Press recently had the opportunity to interview Stephen Geber.  Read on to gain insight into the mind and philosophy of this legendary cellist.

Below you will find the complete list of scores edited by Stephen Geber.
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