Biography

Sonia Lazar was born in Moscow, Russia, and spent her early childhood years in Israel, on a kibbutz. She started taking violin lessons at age eight, when her family moved to Calgary. At age 11, she enrolled in the pre-college Academy program at Mount Royal University, where she was a student of Danuta Ciring, and later, William van der Sloot. Sonia received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Lynn University Conservatory in Florida, and went on to receive a Master of Music degree from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA, under the tutelage of violinist and renowned pedagogue Cyrus Forough. Her passion for violin and orchestral performance has taken her to perform in New Zealand, Spain and Portugal, and three tours to Carnegie Hall, New York as part of the Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic. 

Sonia has been a member of the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra since 2013. From 2012 to 2016, she worked as a freelance violinist in Toronto, where she performed as part of the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra, Windsor Symphony and Niagara Symphony. In August 2016, she moved to Winnipeg to join the first violin section of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra – though she still travels regularly to Ontario to perform as a member of the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra. Outside of the orchestra, Sonia is an avid baker, and also enjoys playing Klezmer music, spending time with friends, taking long walks and going to local coffee houses (whether in Hamilton, Toronto, Winnipeg or Calgary!). She has performed multiple times at the Ashkenaz Festival in Toronto, Winnipeg’s Musica Poetica Baroque series, and Toronto’s Canzona Chamber Players series, and has been a guest on Winnipeg’s Music ‘N’ Mavens series and the All About Jews: Music & Culture series.