Leah Ilem, Viola
Violist Leah Ilem joined the Oregon Symphony in April 2005. Leah studied at the Cleveland Institute of Music earning a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree. Her principal teachers were Robert Vernon, Jeffrey Irvine, and Lynne Ramsey.
Leah is a former member of the Grant Park Symphony. Before joining the Oregon Symphony she was a member of the Canton Symphony Orchestra and performed with the Detroit Symphony and New World Symphony. In past summers Leah attended the Taos School of Music, National Repertory Orchestra, and Encore School for Strings. Leah was also invited to participate in a performance of John Adams’ Chamber Symphony, which was conducted by the composer at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall and broadcast on NPR.
While at CIM, Leah was the recipient of many awards and honors. She received the Robert Vernon Prize for Viola Performance, the James Hall Award for Undergraduate Achievement, and the Horace and Marie Arnold Award in Viola. Leah was also the scholarship recipient of an instrument from the Virtu Foundation.
Originally from Washington, Leah began playing the viola in her public school orchestra in fifth grade. In her free time Leah enjoys skiing, hiking, and cooking.