Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra: making great music personal

Susan Ranney


Susan Ranney joined the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra in 1978 and was appointed principal bass in 1981. Even before she became a member of LACO, Sue was invited to perform with the Orchestra as a guest player and worked under the baton of the Orchestra’s first music director, Sir Neville Marriner.

Over the last three decades, Sue has enjoyed wonderful opportunities as a member of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. Some of these include a concert tour of Japan with LACO’s third music director Iona Brown; performing the solo contrabass obbligato part in the Mozart aria “Per Questa Bella Mano” with Thomas Quasthoff, one of the most remarkable bass-baritones of our time; and recording Igor Stravinsky’s L’Histoire du Soldat. Sue also played principal bass on LACO’s tour of the United States and South America with the distinguished German conductor Helmut Rilling and the Gächinger Kantorei of Stuttgart. A highlight of that tour was the Orchestra’s appearance in the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Outside of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Sue has played concerts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Sir Simon Rattle and Michael Tilson Thomas, among others. She has appeared in three internationally-renowned music festivals – La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest, Chamber Music Northwest and the Oregon Bach Festival, where she was principal bass for over 20 years.

As a teacher, Sue has taught at both the University of Southern California and Pomona College. With an interest in sharing performances with other bassists, she has arranged a large library of chamber music for bass ensembles of two – five players.

Presently, she serves as secretary on the Board of Directors of the Recording Musicians Association (RMA), an organization whose mission it is to support and fight for the rights of recording musicians.

Susan Ranney

photo Michael Burke

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