Dr. Leslie CainMusic Theory, Ear Training, Accompanist Music
Pianist Leslie Cain, D.M.A., has been widely praised for her delicate touch and nuanced sense of color at the keyboard. Born and raised in Los Angeles, she completed her Bachelor’s degree at the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied with André-Michel Schub. She subsequently earned her Master’s and Doctoral degrees from the University of California, Santa Barbara in the studio of Paul Berkowitz. Prior to attending conservatory, she completed an undergraduate degree in Philosophy from California State University, Los Angeles, where she was named the department’s Outstanding Undergraduate in her junior year.
Dr. Cain’s primary interest as a pianist and scholar is the French repertoire of the early 20th century, especially Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy, and Erik Satie. Her doctoral dissertation, “Ravel the Existentialist?,” reconciles the two disciplines of her academic background by analyzing the composer’s life and work using the philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre as a conceptual and historical lens. She is also an alumna of the Conservatoire Américain de Fontainebleau, the renowned institute of French music held each summer at Napoleon Bonaparte’s château.
Dr. Cain has performed in master classes with many of the world’s foremost musicians, including Murray Perahia, Jeremy Denk, Gilbert Kalish, Yo-Yo Ma and the Kronos Quartet. She was one of six pianists selected to perform in Richard Goode’s master class on the Debussy preludes at Carnegie Hall, by invitation of the Weill Music Institute. Her other recognitions include first prizes in the Los Angeles International Liszt Competition, the MTNA Senior Piano Competition, and the Cypress College Piano Competition, as well as concerto performances with several orchestras throughout Southern California. During her doctoral studies, she was a member of UC Santa Barbara’s fellowship ensemble, the Young Artist Piano Quartet, and especially enjoys collaborating with string players as a chamber musician.
Besides playing and teaching music, a few of Dr. Cain’s favorite things include her tortoiseshell cat Ouija, lavender lattes, the New Orleans Spooky Book Club, and, when assuming her not-so-secret identity as a fitness instructor, teaching classes for Barre3.