Our Artists

Leslie VanBecker, viola

 Leslie Van Becker has been principal viola of the Grand Rapids Symphony since 1978.  She earned a bachelor of music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and master’s in music from the Yale University School of Music. 

In recital, Ms. Van Becker has appeared with the DeVos Quartet, Castalia, Ghandarva Piano Quartet, Trio Nouveau, New World String Quartet, Clifford Music Group and Lakeshore Chamber Players as well as on the Chamber Music Festival of Saugatuck.  She has appeared as a soloist on numerous occasions with the Grand Rapids Symphony.  She participated in the Cabrillo Music Festival in Santa Cruz, California from 1978-80 and 1988-2013 (principal viola from 1996-2013), where she played orchestral music exclusively from the 20th century.  Ms. Van Becker serves on the faculty of Calvin College and maintains an active class of viola students in Grand Rapids. 

She and her husband Edward Clifford have two grown children who live in Brooklyn, New York: Matthew, who is a jazz bassist, and Genevieve, who is a fashion designer.   Leslie and Edward share their 100-year-old Heritage Hill home with their cat Scraps.