Celebrating 63 Years of Inspired Music Making!

June 22 – July 27, 2024

Alumni Feature: Lauren Spaulding, 2008-09 Viola

This story was originally published in October 2022 in EMF’s Alumni Newsletter. Subscribe to our Alumni Newsletter today to receive stories like this and more alumni news right to your inbox!

Photo credit: Kumiko Sakamoto

Lauren Spaulding, viola ’08 and 09, has had a unique path to success as a musician. Today, Lauren is a member of the award-winning Thalea String Quartet, and a member and co-founder of the Persian, Cajun and LGBTQ+ composer influenced Tallā Rouge viola duo. However, Lauren didn’t start out with plans to become a professional musician. She was studying neuroscience as an early undergraduate when a friend and EMF alum encouraged her to attend Eastern Music Festival.

“I started viola when I was 15 – I was a little ‘behind’ regarding the traditional classical music learning experience. My summer at EMF definitely was life changing in that it was where I decided to pursue music.”

Lauren particularly loves chamber music, which EMF had an integral part in. “EMF was my first experience with chamber music . . . the viola studio were all really connected to our peers at EMF.” One of Lauren’s favorite memories involved an unprogrammed study and play performance among the viola studio students of the Vaughan Williams theme Thomas Thallis.

“I remember, all the musicians I was there with were really kind, and a lot of them went really far in successful careers. We had a special bond there.”