Lisa Ralia Heffter, composer and violist
Lisa Ralia Heffter is truly a multi-faceted musician. She is a prominent composer who writes in a variety of styles, and a concert violist who performs on stages around the world.
Trained at the Juilliard School in New York, Heffter has performed with the Manhattan Philharmonic and the New England Symphonic Chamber Ensemble at Carnegie Hall. She has toured Greece with the Elysium String Quartet, and Europe with the Manfred quartet, based at the Conservatoir Nationale in Dijon, France. Heffter has performed with the Orchestre Nationale de Grenoble and, most recently, with the Beijing International Orchestra. She gave solo and chamber music recitals in Beijing and Qinhuangdao, China.
Lisa Ralia Heffter is also a prolific composer of music for both the concert stage and the theatre. Works from the first category include "Eschape", for flute quartet. Premiered at Carnegie Recital Hall, the New York Times review described it as "astonishingly beautiful ... an homage to Ravel". Heffter composed the score for the Manhattan Ballet's production of "Through the Looking Glass Darkly", performed at Harkness Dance Center; "Suite in G" premiered at Aspen Summer Music Festival in Colorado; "Eight Weeks in the Mountains", a comic opera, performed at the Taos Music Festival in New Mexico; and "From Inside the Volcano", a symphony recorded in association with Kaleidesound of Berlin.
"Islands of the Gods", Heffter's third string quartet, was premiered in Greece by the Elysium String Quartet for the opening of the Mykonos Festival in1999. "Opus 108", Heffter's duet for viola and cello, was recorded at Sony by Daniel Avshalomov (violist with the American String Quartet) and cellist Raphael Jezerski. Heffter's risque operetta for mezzo-soprano, "Oh! The Sport of Love!" has been performed in living rooms and theaters in Europe, Asia, and across America from New York to Hawaii.
Recent commissions include Heffter's song cycle "The Five Elements", performed by baritone John Tedeschi in Connecticut and New York recitals, and "Aaron and Cyma Stories", written for piano/flute/violin trio, performed for Children's Outreach Programs in New Jersey by the Chamber Musicians at Great Gorge.
In 2006 Heffter was commissioned to write the full accompanying score for the critically acclaimed Daryl-Roth Off-Broadway theatre production of "Esoterica" starring Eric Walton. She also wrote incidental and transitional music for Off-Broadway award winning productions of "Beast on the Moon" and "Manuscript".
In 1994, Heffter's theatrical opera "Atom & Eve" sold out staged readings at the Westbeth Theater. Directed by Tom O'Horgan (Jesus Christ Superstar; Hair), recorded excerpts from this work drew a commission to compose the full musical score for the theatrical opera "Blood & Fire" (Canadian TV/Movie company Salter Street Productions). "Blood & Fire" had a sold out staged reading at the York Theater in spring of 2001, and then won a presentation in New York's Spring 2002 Ascap/Disney Musical Theater Workshop Showcase.
"Permission", Heffter's prized rock opera fable, is the first ‘musical in a box' with DVD projections and music synched up for a low cost production that works on any stage. "Permission" had a successful two week run at New York's famed Triad Club in July 2005. Described as "insanely powerful", the instrumental was recorded by Broadway guitarist Kevin Kuhn (Tommy; Lion King) percussionist Howie Joines (Miss Saigon; The Producers) and bass great John Sandborne.
Heffter is currently working on "Mars:2076", a futuristic musical based on the American Revolution.