University of South Florida

School of Music

USF College of The Arts

Scott Kluksdahl

Professor of Cello

Phone: (813) 974-2311


Scott Kluksdahl serves as Professor of Cello at the University of South Florida, where he has been on the faculty since 1991. He is a designated Theodore and Venette Askounes-Ashford Distinguished Scholar, and has presented master classes in such institutions as Eastman School of Music, Indiana University, Boston Conservatory, Northwestern University, and San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He teaches summers at the Brancaleoni International and the ARIA International Summer Festivals, as well as at the Cello Seminar at the Brown Farm in Salem, New York. Mr. Kluksdahl’s commitment to teaching prompted the renowned cellist Zara Nelsova to remark, “It is rare to find a cellist who is equally at home as a concert artist as well as a great pedagogue. In my opinion Scott Kluksdahl has one of the great talents of his generation.”

Kluksdahl has performed for nearly four decades as chamber musician, recitalist and soloist in the United States, Europe, Israel, and Central and South America.Following a daring New York debut program of cutting-edge modern works at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall, Strings Magazine identified Scott Kluksdahl as “a simply superb cellist, playing with consummate technical ease, a beautiful sound, total conviction, authority and dedication to the music.” Scott Kluksdahl’s devotion to the works of current composers is widely regarded, and he is known for his close affiliations with Nicolas Bacri, Richard Brodhead, David Del Tredici, Robert Helps, Gunther Schuller, Augusta Read Thomas and Richard Wernick, whose works he has commissioned, studied, and recorded. He has also collaborated with Benjamin C.S. Boyle, Tamar Diesendruck, Philip Lasser, Eric Moe, Laura Elise Schwendinger and Scott Wheeler, and he has worked closely with American legends Leonard Bernstein, Elliott Carter, Andrew Inbrie, Donald Martino, and Ralph Shapey. As cello soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra, Kluksdahl premiered Philip Lasser’s Vocalise for Cello and Orchestra at Symphony Hall, and he has made acclaimed recordings of many of these composers’ works on the CRI, Centaur, Triton, Pierian, Nimbus, Crystal, and Albany labels.

Kluksdahl presented his solo debut with the San Francisco Symphony, and since then he has performed a broad gamut of his instrument’s repertory throughout the entire United States and in the major musical centers of New York City, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. He has been heard in Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, Kennedy Center, Dame Myra Hess Series, Phillips Collection and Tanglewood Music Festival, and continues to perform the complete cycle of Bach Suites for cello, notably at the Oregon and Philadelphia Bach Festivals. He has been a frequent a guest chamber artist at the Martha’s Vineyard Chamber Music Society, Music from Salem, Killington Music Festival, Craftsbury Chamber Players, Lancaster Music Festival, and Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music. He was a founding member of the Lions Gate Trio for two decades. He currently performs as cellist of the Veronika String Quartet, and he has been a guest artist with numerous ensembles including DaPonte, Miami and Pacifica String Quartets.

Highlights of Kluksdahl’s 2019/20 season included performances of the complete cycle of Beethoven’s quartet works with the Veronika String Quartet, world premieres of Richard Brodhead’s Duo for Cello and Piano with his longtime sonata colleague, the pianist Noreen Cassidy-Polera, and a Florida first performance of H.K. Gruber’s Concerto in One Movement for cello and orchestra. Additionally, he oversees a series of three community programs as the artistic director of ‘If Music Be the Food…’ a collaborative chamber music outreach that brings attention and assistance to hunger issues in the Tampa Bay community and the greater west coast region of Florida.