Following a decade in the spotlight, American violinist Andrew Sords
has garnered accolades on four continents for his performances combining
visceral virtuosity and ravishing tone. Hailed in the press as "a
fully formed artist" (Kalisz-Poland News), "utterly
radiant" (Canada's Arts Forum), and "exceptionally heartfelt and
soulful" (St. Maarten's Daily Herald), Sords has received numerous
awards and distinctions reflecting his career trajectory, including the
Pittsburgh Concert Society's Career Grant, the National Shirley Valentin
Award, and the NFMC Young Artist Award. A recent debut with the Boulder
Chamber Orchestra (Arensky concerto) prompted Opus Colorado to declare:
"[Sords'] remarkably flexible bow arm and relaxed left hand created
the impression that he was having no difficulty whatsoever."
Born in Newark, Delaware, Sords began piano lessons at five, and
shortly thereafter asked for a violin. After studying for seven years with
Liza Grossman, Sords was a pupil of Linda Cerone, David Russell, and
Chee-Yun Kim at both the Cleveland Institute of Music and Southern
Methodist University. Early competition successes led to collaborations
with nearly 300 orchestras worldwide: of Sords' Australia debut, the
Melbourne Age declared, "Sords made a voluble soloist in the A Major
Turkish concerto, forging his statements with an admirably firm clarity
and bringing out the work's virtuosity as often as possible. His bowing
arm showed an attractive suppleness and an attention to variety of
phrasing that made even the episodic finale a pleasure."
Andrew Sords has appeared with celebrated conductors and orchestras.
The 2017/18 season features appearances with the Flagstaff Symphony,
Pueblo Symphony, Spartanburg Philharmonic, Southeastern Ohio Symphony, Des
Moines Community Orchestra, Grand Junction Symphony, Durham Chamber
Orchestra, Longmont Symphony, and at Guatemala's "Festival Bravissimo".
In recent seasons, concerto collaborations have included the Oakland
Symphony, Windsor Symphony, Motor City Symphony, Kalisz Philharmonic,
North State Symphony, Chattanooga Symphony, Cleveland Philharmonic,
Boulder Chamber Orchestra, Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, Toronto
Philharmonia, Gulf Coast Symphony, Melbourne Chamber Symphony, and the Dvořák
concerto at Toronto's famed Glenn Gould Studio.
Sords made his UK concerto debut in Edinburgh and Scotland (Tchaikovsky)
with the Glasgow Philharmonia, and his Guatemala debut with the Bruch
concerto. In 2016, Sords returned to his childhood orchestra, the
Contemporary Youth Orchestra, with the Barber Concerto (Liza Grossman). In
Madison, Wisconsin, an estimated audience of 30,000 heard a recent outdoor
performance of the Tchaikovsky concerto with the WCO. Additionally, Sords
has worked with myriad conductors including Robert Franz, Michael Morgan,
Sidney Harth, Mario Mateus, Andrew Sewell, Carl Topilow, Scott Seaton,
Luis Biava, and Matthew Kraemer.
As a prolific recitalist, Sords has appeared in St. Croix, Washington,
D.C., Maui, New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, and at St.
Augustine's (FL) EMMA Series at Flagler College. In Fall 2016, Sords
returned to Australia to present the Mendelssohn concerto and
Vaughan-Williams "Lark Ascending", and collaborated with
cellists John Walz and Joseph Johnson in performances of the Brahms
"Double" concerto. A 2015 Canada tour with the Mendelssohn Piano
Trios and Violin Sonata will be reprised with Cheryl Duvall and Luke
Severn in 2017 with the Brahms Trio Cycle in Ottawa, Montreal, Guelph, and
Toronto. First invited by San Miguel de Allende's ProMusica Series in
2011, Sords has returned with six varied recitals, and performed two
programs for West Palm Beach's Norton Museum Series.
As a frequent soloist in the Caribbean, Sords has appeared in Puerto
Rico, Anguilla, St. Maarten, Trinidad and Tobago, Grand Cayman, and the
U.S. Virgin Islands, and "STRINGS MAGAZINE" profiled a series of
performances with the Trinidad and Tobago Youth Philharmonic. From a
Cleveland recital with Eriko Izumida, the review enthused: "Expertly
performed, he brought a full and rich sound and gave a heroic performance
of Ravel's 'Tzigane', powerful and in control of the many notes. Sords
impressed with his total command of technique, consummate musicianship and
bravura as he tossed off scads of notes and sang out like a diva…he and
Izumida kept the audience in the palm of their hands all afternoon."
Sords has appeared on the festival circuit including summer appearances
in Fairbanks, Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, and the Republic of Georgia with
Liana Isakadze's World Virtuosi. With Ms. Isakadze's ensemble, Sords
appeared in Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall. In 2018, Sords will collaborate
with pianist Elyane Laussade at Australia's Brunswick Beethoven Festival.
After a successful debut at the Glenn Gould Theatre in 2015, Sords will
return with the Elgar Violin Concerto celebrating 2018's Canada Day.
Appearing annually in Canada with Cheryl Duvall, their collaborations next
season include a return engagement on the Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber Music
A man of diverse interests, Sords competed in the charity fundraiser
"Pittsburgh's Dancing With The Stars" as the first classical
artist to do so. Sords has performed numerous times for LGBT outreach,
including both the Tchaikovsky and Beethoven Violin Concerti in repeat
collaborations with the Minnesota Philharmonic and Atlanta Philharmonic,
and a summer 2017 appearance with Orchestra Amadeus (Tchaikovsky) marks
his New York City concerto debut. Featured four times as a guest on Sirius
XM's Derek and Romaine Show and profiled by "OUT Magazine",
NPR'S Morning Edition, and hundreds of media outlets, Sords also performed
the National Anthem for ESPN2's WNBA Pride Game (2014). In 2017, Sords
opened a sold-out Cleveland Indians game with the National Anthem at
Cleveland's Progressive Field.
Sords's recent collaboration with Sean Christopher on the New-Age album
"Transcendence" has been a commercial and critical success, with
reviews stating: "much of this is owed to the gorgeous and precise
playing by Andrew Sords, whose violin adds a thrumming undercurrent of
pure life throughout the album's stainless steel structure." This
album is available on iTunes, Amazon.com, and CDBaby.
Sords is represented by EMC Artists, Ltd., and makes his home in Shaker