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Longy Welcomes Renowned Cellist Jean-Michel Fonteneau as Newest Faculty Member  

By April 8, 2024News

April 8, 2024 

Longy is proud to announce the arrival of its newest Strings faculty member, internationally renowned Franco-American cellist and educator Jean-Michel Fonteneau. 

Fonteneau has dedicated his life to empowering generations of musicians to be thought leaders, global citizens, and ambassadors of music by teaching them the musical, personal, and professional skills required to thrive in today’s ever-changing and unpredictable world. 

Initially a physics major in college, he transformed his professional trajectory after hearing concerts at the 1976 Casals Festival in Prades, France. He never looked back and has since had a rewarding international teaching and performing career. 

A former member of the Lyon Symphony Orchestra and Lyon Opera Orchestra, Fonteneau formed Le Quatuor Ravel, which became a world-touring, award-winning string quartet. The group was awarded prizes at the Evian International String Quartet Competition and the French Victoire de la Musique Classique. 

He was a chamber music faculty member at the Lyon Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique for eight years, where he created a unique curriculum for first-year students focused on the foundational and essential skills of chamber music playing and career building. 

In 1999, he left France to join the San Francisco Conservatory of Music’s cello and chamber music faculty. He built a strong cello studio and further developed the department with monthly recitals, ensemble concerts, and collaboration with the composition, early music, and collaborative piano departments.  

Currently, Fonteneau is also a faculty member at Yellow Barn, an international center for chamber music, where he also serves on the board. 

Since moving to the United States, he has worked and performed with renowned artists, including Leon Fleisher, Claude Frank, Peter Frankl, Bonnie Hampton, Nobuko Imai, Gilbert Kalish, Kim Kashkashian, and Joel Krosnick, among others.  

He has also been featured in concert with long-established ensembles, including the Danel, Escher, Fine Arts, Pro Arte, and Tokyo Quartets, and Martin Lovett of the Amadeus Quartet.  

Jean-Michel Fonteneau will teach cello courses beginning in the Fall 2024 semester.