“Laufer is a different kind of artist...his piano playing sparkles with sensitivity, elegance, and delicacy and maintains those qualities even when playing with great passion..."
--V. Vasan, AllMusic Review
Doctor of Musical Arts, Rice University Shepherd School of Music: 2003
Fulbright Scholar, Spain: 2000
Master of Music, Rice University Shepherd School of Music: 1998
Bachelor of Music, University of Michigan: 1995
Emilio del Rosario
Gold Medal 1995 Nena Wideman Piano Competition
Gold Medal 1990 Union League Civic Arts Foundation Competition
Gold Medal 1990 Liberty Freemont Competition
Silver Medal 1988 Stravinsky International Piano Competition
Certificate of Appreciation, Aspira Foundation of Chicago
Cultural Achievement Award, Steinway and Sons
Man of the Year, Cuban Medical Association
Bingham Award for Campus Excellence, Peace College
Honorary Senate Resolution Bill #1254, Illinois 86th General Assembly
Nominee: Musical Ambassadorship, US Department of State by the Honorable Robert Etheridge
A Chicago native of Puerto Rican and Cuban parents, Milton Rubén Laufer began playing the piano at three years of age, and his training includes studies at the Music Institute of Chicago, the Gnessin Institute, the Eastman School of Music, the University of Michigan, and Rice University.
Laufer has performed in venues ranging from Lincoln Center to Tchaikowsky Hall and has shared the stage with artists ranging from Natalie Cole to Guerassim Voronkov. His appearances on Spanish-speaking television and radio have been aired throughout Europe, South America, Central America, and the Caribbean.
Recognized internationally as a leading interpreter and scholar of Spanish piano music, Laufer’s editions of Isaac Albéniz’s 3 Improvisations for Piano and La Vega are published by G. Henle Verlag of Munich and available worldwide. Currently Laufer is writing the book, "The Pianist's Guide to the Repertoire of Spain".
In the summer of 2019, Laufer will begin two recording projects: an album featuring piano and vocal works by Cuban composer, Ernesto Lecuona, and recording of Latin works for cello and piano with Canadian cellist, Nigel Boehm.
The 2018-2019 season brings Laufer to Colombia, Canada, Italy, Spain, and select cities throughout the United States.
He currently resides in Sylva, North Carolina with his wife, coloratura soprano Marina De Ratmiroff, and their two daughters, Carmen Lucía, and Veronika.
Apart from the concert stage, Dr. Milton Rubén Laufer has proven himself equally adept in positions of executive leadership. At age 19, he was among the youngest executives in the North American retail music scene, managing institutional sales for the Baldwin Piano and Organ Company in the Northeast region. That spirit of entrepreneurship has guided him throughout his career.
Laufer has traveled throughout the world to work on exciting ventures with institutions and corporations including the Academy of Performing Arts in Hong Kong, the Banff Centre, SONY, G. Henle Verlag, and Knight Foundation among others. Companies including Yamaha, Zenph Sound Innovations, and Steinway & Sons, venture capital firms, as well as numerous international presenting organizations, universities, and government agencies have sought his counsel for special projects.
A persuasive advocate for the arts and education, Laufer has raised over 30 million dollars for the organizations he has served. In addition to fundraising and donor cultivation, his areas of expertise include program development, grant writing and compliance, arts/academic accreditation, public outreach, due diligence and executive administration in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors.
As an educator, he is guided by the principle that students must be adaptable to the changing vocational landscape which awaits them. They must not only be skilled, expressive technicians, but also entrepreneurs and convincing communicators who understand the value of their art as a commodity in the market place and its power as a force for change within their community.
Laufer is a charter trustee and lifetime member of the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame and an active voting member of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (Grammy's) and Latin Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (Latin Grammy's). Dr. Laufer currently serves as Associate Professor and Director of The School of Music at Western Carolina University. He is a founding partner of the Tacitus International Consulting Group.
Guest Speaker, Miami Summer Music Festival: Grant Writing for Tomorrow's Arts Entrepreneurs
Lecturer, Steinway pre-concert lecture series Miami, Detroit Symphony: The Musician as Curator: Constructing Meaningful Programs
Lecturer, Steinway pre-concert lecture series Miami, BBC Orchestra: The Musical Consequences of the 100 Years' War
Winter Creative Residency, the Banff Centre, Banff Canada
Artistic Residency, Conservatorio Nacional de Colombia, Bogota
Artistic Residency, Great Melody School of Music, Hong Kong
Host, Jazz Legends: Gershwin at the Piano, Raleigh Little Theater
Host, WCPE Radio Raleigh: Manning Series Highlights
Speaker, International Conference of the British and International Federation of Festivals, Market Bosworth, England: The Sir Walter Raleigh Festival
Speaker, The Cervantes Foundation, Manila, Philippines: The Migration and Transformation of Music From Spain to its Colonies
Speaker, International Conference of the British and International Federation of Festivals, Bournemouth, England: The Festival Movement in America
Speaker, International Conference of Spanish Keyboard Music, Almeria, Spain: Recovering Isaac Albéniz's 1903 Improvisations (Spanish)
Lecture, The University of Manila, Philippines: Latin Music of the Americas
Western Carolina University School of Music Cullowhee, North Carolina 2017-present
Florida International University College of Communication, Architecture, + the Arts Miami, Florida 2015-2017
Tacitus International Consulting Group Miami, Florida 2014-present
New World School of the Arts Miami, Florida 2012-2014
Zenph Sound Innovations Durham, North Carolina 2011-2012
William Peace University (formerly Peace College) Raleigh, North Carolina: 2001-2011
Affiliations: National Association of Schools of Music · National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences · Music Teachers National Association · Latin Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences · Association of Fulbright Alumni · Rotary Club International · Association of Latino Professionals for America
Board Service: Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame: Charter Board Member, Lifetime Member · Greater Miami Youth Symphony Orchestra: Trustee (2012-2014) · Miami Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs Developing Arts Panel · Artistic Advisory Board, EDR Foundation, Chicago · Miami Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs Youth Arts Enrichment Panel · Artistic Advisory Board, Alberta Piano Festival, Edmonton Canada · Western Carolina Friends of the Arts
Selected Juries, 2012-2018: Steinway and Sons Piano Competition · Miami International Piano Competition · North Carolina Music Teachers Association · CINTAS Foundation · Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame Nominating Committee · Florida Federation of Music Clubs · Hong Kong Schools Music Festival · International Piano Forum, Frankfurt · Opus Fest, Manila · North Carolina Symphony · Great Melody Festival, Hong Kong