Described by the New York Times as “an impressive violinist [who plays] intimately and sweetly at one moment and with fearless enthusiasm at the next,” Leslie Shank leads an active musical life as a soloist and chamber musician. She has been a member of The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra for 27 years, 24 as assistant concertmaster. Shank gave her New York recital debut at Carnegie's Weill Hall as a winner of the Artists International Competition, and was twice re-engaged to perform on its Special Presentation Series.
Shank currently serves as concertmaster of the Music in the Mountains Festival in Colorado, and has performed at numerous other festivals including the Aspen, Grand Teton, Mainly Mozart, Marlboro, and the Britt Festival, where she served as concertmaster of the festival orchestra. As a member of the prestigious Musicians from Marlboro, she toured the East Coast. She is also a founding member of both the Isles Ensemble and the Hot Dish Trio.
On disc, Shank can be heard on a new Centaur release, Recital for Violin & Guitar, with her husband, classical guitarist Joseph Hagedorn. The Shank-Hagedorn Duo has performed on Minnesota Public Radio’s Saint Paul Sunday. Also on the Centaur label, Shank has recorded Bartok's violin sonatas with pianist Heather MacLaughlin. In 1997, the Shank-MacLaughlin Duo received the McKnight Artist Fellowship for Performing Musicians.
Leslie was awarded both a bachelor and master of music degree from the Juilliard School. Her teachers were Shirley Givens, Felix Galimir, and Dorothy Delay.