Leah Coloff is a cellist and singer/songwriter. Raised in the Pacific Northwest, her classical roots collide with 70’s rock and a pioneer spirit. Creating songs and arrangements that are honest, sensual, funny, brutal, pissed-off, beautiful and chilly sweet, her voice and virtuoso cello playing distinguish her own and other composer’s work.
Leah’s first self-released record Dark Sweet Heart, is a collection of loud, soft, punk, rock, pretty, crazy songs. It is the epitome of her self-identified style CLUNK, classical meets punk. Selections from this record were performed at the first 21c Liederabend Festival produced by Beth Morrison Projects, voted one of the best classical performances of 2009 by Time Out New York.
Her band Lucibel Crater, described by Tony Visconti as being “a breath of fresh air with compelling melodies and an evocative hybrid organic/electro sound,” created The Family Album, with guest guitar by Lou Reed. It was featured in Vogue Italia and Italian Urban Magazine. Lucibel toured Italy and Germany and played the Jazz Welten Festival in Dresden.
Leah was instrumental in the creation of (Gr)albums, a multi media app for ipad/iphone combining music with art, graphics, moving images and storytelling. For the first (Gr)album, Book Of Sarth, Leah executive produced and was the graphic designer of pages, typography and animating text.
In the classical realm, Leah centers on contemporary music, working with living composers including Philip Glass, Ted Hearne, Joel Thome, Sean Friar and Michael Gordon. She was the cellist for The Source, an oratorio by Ted Hearne premiered at the BAM Next Wave Festival in a Beth Morrison Production. It was named one of the 15 best classical vocal performances of 2014 by The New York Times.
Leah is cellist and contributing vocalist in Ted Hearne’s art rock project Delusion Story. Their performance at Present Music’s 2013 season finale evoked Express Milwaukee to pronounce, “The greatest, most unforgettable performances of the night were by Leah Coloff, who sang Hearne’s most searing songs while ferociously playing the cello part.”
Leah played cello and portrayed an Emily for Lightning at our feet, Ridge Theater’s multimedia song cycle inspired by the poems of Emily Dickinson with songs by composer Michael Gordon, performed at the BAM Next Wave Festival.
Leah is cellist and vocalist with Scorchio, an electro-acoustic string quartet, resident string quartet for the Tibet House Benefit Concert produced by Philip Glass since 2001. This past summer they accompanied Damon Albarn in support of his solo CD, Everyday Robots for radio, t.v. and festivals in the U.S.. Scorchio recorded Trey Anastasio and the Scorchio Quintet: Live from Princeton, during the 2010 sold out show at Richardson Auditorium. They have performed with many prominent artists including Bowie, Philip Glass, Iggy Pop, Patti Smith, Michael Stipe, Vampire Weekend, Regina Spektor, Michael Riesman, David Byrne, Ziggy Marley, and Rufus Wainwright, among others.
Leah is a regular performer at the Obie award winning The Secret City and is a member of The Secret City band.
She has recorded with numerous musical artists including Michael Cerveris, Ziggy Marley, Linda Thompson, Dean & Britta, Angelique Kidjo, Nancy Sinatra and Mark Mulcahy among others.
Leah holds a BM in cello performance from The San Francisco Conservatory of Music. She studied cello with Irene Sharp, Bernard Greenhouse and Ray Davis. Leah studied theater with Jane Baldwin, Lynn Thompson and Jeannie Lindheim in Boston, MA.