Hailed as one of the outstanding cellists of his generation, John Walz has excited audiences on four continents. Born in Southern California, John Walz began his studies with Eleonore Schoenfeld. In 1966, he heard the great French cellist, Pierre Fournier, play the Dvorak Concerto with Zubin Mehta and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, an event that he says, “changed my life”. In 1973, he traveled to Switzerland to study with Fournier, becoming one of the French master’s finest pupils.
He has made twenty-five tours of Europe, playing recitals and concertos in such important musical centers as London, Paris, Zurich, Geneva, Lucerne, Rome, Vienna, Hamburg, and Oslo. 1983 took him to Australia, where he played in Sydney Melbourne, and Adelaide. His solo engagements with more that 120 symphony orchestras throughout the world have included performances of 25 different concertos. In 1997, he performed the Dvorak Concerto in Prague at the Rudolfinum, Dvorak’s own hall. This performance was subsequently recorded and released on Carlton Classics, to great acclaim. Most recently he performed and recorded Bloch’s Schelomo and the Shostakovich Concerto #1 with JoAnn Falletta and the Czech National Symphony Orchestra.
Equally at home in chamber music and orchestral playing, he is currently the principal cellist with the Los Angeles Opera, having previously held that position with the Long Beach Symphony for twenty years. As a chamber music artist, he has played with such luminaries as Leonard Pennario, Mona Golabek, Nathan Milstein, Jean-Pierre Rampal and Pierre Fournier.
In 1979, John Walz was a founding member of the Pacific Trio. This renowned ensemble, which consists of violinist Roger Wilkie, and pianist and co-founder Edith Orloff, has played more than 900 concerts throughout North America and Europe. In addition, Mr. Walz is currently on the faculty of the Idyllwild Arts Academy in Idyllwild, CA. Future engagements include a debut with the Phillipine Philharmonic in Manila, and the release of a new cd by the Pacific Trio, featuring Beethoven’s Triple Concerto and “Archduke” Trio.