Herbert S. Autrey Professor of Cello
B.Mus. (1971) Oberlin College
1116 Alice Pratt Brown Hall
Norman Fischer first appeared on the international concert stage as cellist with the Concord String Quartet. The Concords won the Naumburg Chamber Music Award, an Emmy and several Grammy nominations, and recorded over 40 works on RCA Red Seal, Vox, Nonesuch, Turnabout and CRI. The New York Times recently said, "During its 16 years, the supervirtuosic Concord String Quartet championed contemporary work while staying rooted in the Western tradition." In addition to performing the major solo concerti, Mr. Fischer has premiered and recorded many new scores for cello and orchestra. Recitals of unaccompanied cello works have received rave reviews such as "Inspiring" [New York Times] for his New York debut recital of the complete Bach Suites in one evening and "Coruscating" [Boston Globe] for his performance of Golijov's Omaramor at the opening of the 1998 Tanglewood festival.
His chamber music expertise has led to guest appearances with the American, Audubon, Blair, Chester, Chiara, Ciompi, Cleveland, Enso, Emerson, Juilliard, Mendelssohn, and Schoenberg string quartets, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Chamber Music Ann Arbor, Chamber Music International, Context, Maui Classical Music Festival, and Houston's Da Camera Society.
Norman Fischer and pianist Jeanne Kierman perform together as the Fischer Duo, and as part of their 30th anniversary season during 2001-2002, Gasparo Records released three discs of American music performed by the Fischers. The first a collection of Fischer Duo commissions by George Rochberg, Samuel Jones, Augusta Read Thomas and Pierre Jalbert, the second a collection of music by Robert Sirota, and the third a compendium of works by Americans born in 1938 (Bolcom, Corigliano, Harbison, Milburn, Tower and Wuorinen). In January 2002 the Duo recorded the complete music for their medium by Chopin and Liszt and will be released by Bridge records in Spring 2006. They have twice represented the United States as Artistic Ambassadors in tours to South America and South Africa.
A devoted teacher and mentor to younger players, Mr. Fischer has taught at Dartmouth College, the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and currently is Professor of Violoncello at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University. In the summer he has taught at the Tanglewood Music Center since 1985 and is currently the coordinator of chamber music and strings.