Shauna Rolston | The Canadian Encyclopedia


Shauna Rolston

Resident in Banff, Alta, from 1979, she joined the Gifted Youth program at the Banff SFA and continued her musical studies with her parents.
Rolston, Shauna
The music is an excerpt from Fauré's Elégie for cello and orchestra performed by Shauna Rolston and the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Uri Mayer (photo by Taffi Rosen).

Shauna Rolston

 Shauna Rolston. Cellist, b Edmonton 31 Jan 1967; BA art history (Yale) 1991. She received her musical education at the Banff CA and also at Yale University, where she was a teaching assistant to cellist Aldo Parisot. She began her cello lessons with Claude Kenneson before she was three years old and continued an intensive study with him for a decade, in conjunction with the specialized musical guidance of her parents, Thomas and Isobel. She appeared with the Rolston Trio in Kaslo, BC, in 1974 at six, played on a TV broadcast in Edmonton at seven, and gave her first Edmonton recital at the University of Alberta at eight. In 1981 she made her debut as a soloist with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, conducted by her father, in a performance of Boëllmann's Symphonic Variations.

Resident in Banff, Alta, from 1979, she joined the Gifted Youth program at the Banff SFA and continued her musical studies with her parents. She participated regularly in cello master classes, studying in Banff with Zara Nelsova, János Starker, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, and Gabriel Magyar, and in Europe with Pierre Fournier at the Geneva Conservatory and William Pleeth at the Britten-Pears School, Aldeburgh.

Rolston made her highly successful New York debut at the Town Hall with her mother, pianist Isobel Moore, in 1983 in a program that included Violet Archer'sImprovisation for solo cello written for her and previously premiered by her in L'Aquila, Italy. Subsequently she has performed worldwide in recitals, radio and television broadcasts, and concerto appearances in Korea, Japan, Canada, Europe, and the USA.

By 1991 she had performed on more than 50 occasions as soloist with orchestra and had been heard frequently on the radio and TV networks of the CBC with Canada's major orchestras. In 1988 with the NACO she undertook a tour of the Maritime provinces. In recital tours (in the course of which, in Canada alone, she has appeared in 40 cities from British Columbia to Nova Scotia), she has been joined by pianists Isobel Moore, Bernadine Blaha, Menahem Pressler, Valerie Tryon, Gloria Saarinen, Angela Cheng, Peter Donohoe, William Tritt, and Elizabeth Sawyer. She has also performed in quintets with the Orford, Purcell, Colorado, and Franciscan string quartets. In 1983, at the invitation of János Starker, she performed Kodály's Sonata for Cello Solo at the Third American Cello Congress in Bloomington, Ind.

Rolston has received major awards from the Canada Council and from the US Pro Musicis foundation. In 1986 she received the Alberta Achievement Award. Her career has been documented in periodicals such as The Strad and Musical America and in numerous TV productions, including the 1989 feature film World Stage produced by CFRN, Edmonton. For her contributions to Canadian music, Rolston was made an ambassador of the Canadian Music Centre in 2009.


Fauré Sonata No. 1, Opus 13 - Franck Sonata in A Major. Pressler piano. 1987. Summit DCD-109 (CD)

I Got Plenty Of Gershwin. Canadian Piano Trio. (1988). Pro Arte CDG-3321 (CD)

Morawetz Memorial to Martin Luther King - Bruch - Fauré - Dvořák - Bliss. Edmonton SO, Mayer conductor. 1989. CBC SMCD-5105

The Romantic Cello: Schumann - Bruch - Saint-Saënes - Fauré - Popper. Moore piano. Sefel SEFD-5036

Further Reading