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University of Iowa News Release

May 28, 2003

KSUI's 'Know the Score' To Remember La Fosse June 8, 11

University of Iowa radio station KSUI, 91.7 FM (101.7 FM in Dubuque), will remember the late violinist Leopold La Fosse on its weekly arts and humanities program "Know the Score," in broadcasts at 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 8 and 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, June 11. The program, hosted by Joan Kjaer, can be heard on the Internet at

KSUI will re-broadcast an interview with La Fosse that took place two years ago. On the program La Fosse, who was on the faculty of the UI School of Music from 1972 until his death Saturday, May 24, discussed and demonstrated the difference between historical and modern instruments.

Kjaer commented, "Leopold La Fosse was an absolute treasure, not only to his friends and family, but to all the people who knew him solely through his music. He brought the notes to life and sent a shudder through all who heard him.

"We at KSUI had the frequent pleasure of interacting with Leo because of his many musical passions. KSUI aired a number of his recitals and eagerly welcomed him when he joined us for a live 'Know the Score,' as he did on two occasions. Leo also came to our studios in 2001 for a conversation on 'Know the Score' focusing on his life in music and a discussion of performance practice. He said in that program that his great good fortune was in making a living by doing what he loved.

"It was our great good fortune was that he did it here, in Iowa City, where so many of us could come to know him personally."

La Fosse had long been a champion of the performance of Baroque music using historical instruments and bows. He had studied Baroque performance practice with Viennese violinist Eduard Melkus, a leading expert on historical performance practices, and frequently performed with Baroque violins and bows. At the UI he lead a group devoted to historical performances, the La Fosse Baroque Ensemble.

La Fosse had been scheduled to perform with the Baroque Ensemble shortly before his death. The group gave its annual Mother's Day concert at the University of Iowa Museum of Art May 11, with violinist Timothy Shiu substituting for La Fosse. La Fosse died Saturday, May 24, at Mercy Hospital in Iowa City.

La Fosse grew up in a musical family: his father and paternal grandfather were violinists, his mother was a concert pianist and her father was a concert organist. He began studying violin at the age of three and made his first public appearance at the age of four. At eight he began a three-year series of engagements on NBC radio. He later studied at the New England Conservatory. Before coming to the UI he taught at the University of Texas at Austin.

At the UI he taught violin and directed the La Fosse Baroque Ensemble. He twice visited Brazil as a Fulbright lecturer and subsequently returned frequently to perform, teach and give master classes.

Throughout his years on the UI faculty La Fosse continued an active international career as soloist and chamber musician, with tours in the United States, Europe, South America and Russia. In 1997 he celebrated his 25th anniversary on the UI faculty with a series of four recitals displaying his versatility, appearing as a virtuoso soloist, a chamber musician, a Baroque performance specialist and a jazz violinist.

UI radio station KSUI is on the web at

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Peter Alexander, 319-384-0072,

PHOTOS of Leopold La Fosse are available at