So, it was with trepidation that I reconnected with Paul Shure years later after he and his violinist wife, Bonnie Douglas, originally from Seattle, relocated and retired here. Paul had long been an admirer of my husband's violin playing and musicianship, having recommended Ilkka for the principal position of LACO and helped to establish his career in the film recording industry. I never imagined that Paul would become a devoted supporter and guide to me as well in my capacity as both soloist and first chair player for the Northwest Chamber Orchestra and Pacific Northwest Ballet. Whenever he and his wife Bonnie attended my performances, they would appear backstage with congratulatory words and gestures. Praise from Paul meant a great deal to me; unlike many others in this profession where superficiality reigns, Paul's manner was reliable and sincere; his knowledge, vast.
Paul Shure's career was laudable. After graduating with honors from Curtis Institute, he became the youngest member of the Philadelphia Orchestra under Leopold Stokowski and Eugene Ormandy. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, then became concertmaster for the Hollywood Bowl Symphony and was invited by Alfred Newman to join the 20th Century Fox studio recording orchestra. Paul was an original member of the Hollywood String Quartet which gained international acclaim through concerts and recordings. He performed under the batons of many legendary conductors, including Arturo Toscanini, Bruno Walter, Fritz Reiner, Igor Stravinsky, Pierre Boulez, Neville Marriner and William Steinberg. Paul was also concertmaster for the most sought after film composers, including Charles Fox, Bill Conti, Gerald Fried, Ernest Gold, Bernard Hermann, John Williams, and Jerry Goldsmith. In 1997, he was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Classical Recording Publications and Critic's Society, and accepted the award in Cannes, France.
I feel privileged to have worked with Paul Shure, and grateful for all he taught me, which hopefully I too can pass along.