Noted as a "poetic violist," (New Yorker) Lawrence Dutton has earned distinction as a recitalist, soloist with orchestra, chamber musician, recording artist and teacher of viola and chamber music. As violist of the world renowned Emerson String Quartet, Mr. Dutton performs over 100 concerts each season and has won six Grammy Awards, most recently in 2001 for "Best Classical Album" and "Best Chamber Music Performance" of the complete string quartets of Shostakovich on the Deutsche Grammophon label. The Emerson Quartet continues to be the only chamber music ensemble to ever win “Best Classical Album”, (also for the complete Bartok string quartets in 1990). The Emerson String Quartet recently won Gramophone Magazine's award for Best Chamber Music Performance for the Shostakovich set. They also won a “Best Chamber Music Performance” Grammy in 1994 for Ives, Barber and in 1998 for their complete Beethoven Quartets and continue to be exclusive recording artists for Deutsche Grammophon.
Mr. Dutton has collaborated with many of the world's great performing artists, including Isaac Stern, Mstislav Rostropovich, Oscar Shumsky, Walter Trampler, Menahem Pressler, Lynn Harrell, Yefim Bronfman, Joseph Kalichstein, Misha Dichter, Jan DeGaetani and Edgar Meyer among others. In addition, he has performed as guest artist with numerous chamber music ensembles such as the Juilliard and Guarneri quartets, and with the Beaux Arts and the Kalichstein, Laredo, Robinson trios. With the Beaux Arts trio he recorded the Shostakovich Piano Quintet, Op. 57, and the Fauré G minor Piano Quartet, Op. 45, on the Philips label. His Aspen Music Festival recording with Jan DeGaetani for Bridge records was nominated for a 1992 Grammy Award. For BRAVO television he recorded works by Stravinsky and Hindemith.
As a soloist, Mr. Dutton has appeared with many American and European orchestras including those of Germany, Belgium, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Colorado, and Virginia, among others. He has also appeared as guest artist at the music festivals of Aspen, Santa Fe, Ravinia and Chamber Music Northwest, and has collaborated with the late Isaac Stern in the International Chamber Music Encounters at both Carnegie Hall and in Jerusalem.
Lawrence Dutton began violin and viola studies with Margaret Pardee and continued with Francis Tursi at the Eastman School, when he began playing viola exclusively. He earned his Bachelors and Masters degrees at the Juilliard School, where he studied with Lillian Fuchs. While at Juilliard, Mr. Dutton was awarded the Walter M. Naumberg Scholarship.
In May 1995, he and other members of the Emerson String Quartet were awarded honorary doctorates from Middlebury College in Vermont. Mr. Dutton is currently a Professor of Chamber Music at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.