Ruth Laredo, piano

Ruth Laredo

Ruth Laredo was born Ruth Meckler in Detroit on Nov. 20, 1937. She attended the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where she studied with Rudolf Serkin. She graduated in 1960 and that same year married the violinist Jaime Laredo, with whom she collaborated musically. They later divorced.

Ms. Laredo made her debut with an orchestra in 1962, in a program led by Leopold Stokowski conducting the American Symphony Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. She made her debut with the New York Philharmonic, conducted by Pierre Boulez, 12 years later. Her Carnegie Hall solo recital debut came only in 1981.

At Curtis, Serkin schooled her in the basics of Mozart and Beethoven, turning a disapproving eye on her youthful love for Rachmaninoff. But it was with his music, as well as that of his fellow Russian Scriabin, that she made her mark.

In the 1970's she recorded two pioneering and acclaimed sets: the entire Scriabin piano sonatas, for the now-defunct Connoisseur label, and the complete solo repertory of Rachmaninoff, on seven LP's for CBS Masterworks.

Her passion for music extended beyond the keyboard. She contributed to ''Piano Today'' magazine and National Public Radio, wrote ''The Ruth Laredo Becoming A Musician Book'' and worked as editor of the complete ''Rachmaninoff Preludes for Piano.''

She also appeared as a pianist in Woody Allen's ''Small Time Crooks,'' the 2000 movie with Hugh Grant and Tracy Ullman.