Laura Pollie Johnson

Laura McDowell

Laura Pollie Johnson (formerly McDowell) is Professor Emerita of Music at Brevard College in Brevard, NC. She taught music history and literature, interdisciplinary courses involving music, and piano. She has performed on harpsichord and recorder for the Colonial Williamsburg Restoration and with the Cullowhee Consort, an early music ensemble in western North Carolina. As writer she was a contributor to Carl Maria Von Weber: A Guide to Research (Garland Publishing, 1990) and editor of Nicolas Payen: Motets and Chansons (A-R Editions, 2006). Her article “The Musical Language of Death and Resurrection: Three Motets by Nicolas Payen” has been published in “Hands-On Musicology: Essays in Honor of Jeffery Kite-Powell (Steglein Press, 2012). She has been an active music critic with CVNC since 2007. She earned a B.M. in Music History from Converse College, the M.A. in Historical Musicology from Columbia University, and the Ph.D. in Historical Musicology from Florida State University. In addition, she holds the Zertifikat Deutsch als Fremdsprache from the Goethe Institute, Salzburg, Austria, a Certificate in Early Music from Florida State University, and is a fellow of the NEA Arts Journalism Institute in Classical Music and Opera.

Articles by Laura Pollie Johnson:

Meyers Leads Asheville Symphony in Halloween Concert

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 22, 2016

Swannanoa Solstice a Holiday Favorite in Asheville

Folk Music, Holiday Concert Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 20, 2015

Flat Rock Playhouse's Enchanting Chasing Rainbows: The Road to Oz

Musical Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 4, 2015

Christoph König Leads Brevard Sinfonia with Soloist Stephan Waarts

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 25, 2015

Jacqueline Petroccia Rocks the House as Patsy Cline

Musical Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 7, 2015

Denk Stars with "Asheville Concerto" in Asheville

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 14, 2015

Carl Tanner Shines As Calàf in Opera Carolina's Turandot

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 24, 2015

King's Singers' Stellar Holiday Program One of Celebration & Remembrance

Vocal Ensemble Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 15, 2014

Children's Theatre of Charlotte Triumphs with Season Favorite Scrooge!

Children's Theatre, Musical Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 5, 2014

Bruns and Martin Play Beethoven and Ravel

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 12, 2014

Pan Harmonia at Haen Gallery: Jazz, Baroque, and More

Chamber Music, Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 5, 2014

Flat Rock Playhouse Revives Memories of a Troubled Era in Miss Saigon

Musical Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 15, 2014

Pan Harmonia Showcases Local Talents in Music for Three and for Eight

Wind Ensemble Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 24, 2014

Dervish Electrifies the House and Pays Tribute to One of Asheville's Own

Folk Music, Traditional Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 22, 2014

Pan Harmonia's Baroque Vibes Concert Plays to a Full House

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 26, 2014

1st of 2 Reviews: Brevard Philharmonic Features Misha Dichter in Season Opener

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 22, 2013

Pan Harmonia Showcases Young Pianist Maria Parrini

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 8, 2013

Brevard Music Center Opera Opens with The Merry Widow

Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 3, 2013

Pan Harmonia Showcases the Rising Talents of Gergel and Aldridge

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  June 9, 2013

Asheville Symphony Orchestra's Rite of Spring One to Remember

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 11, 2013

Local Colors and a North Carolina Premiere: Brevard Philharmonic's Season Closer

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 28, 2013

1st of 2 Reviews: Asheville Lyric Opera Breaks New Ground with Tosca

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 12, 2013

Brevard Philharmonic Hosts Star Violinist Zeyu Victor Li and Blazes New Ground

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 24, 2013

Acclaimed Keepers of the Irish Flame: Altan at Diana Wortham Theatre

World Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 21, 2013

Asheville Chamber Music Series Goes Rogue With the Stellar Players of Windscape

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 10, 2013

Weiser, Patrick and Loew Star in AmiciMusic's Concert of "Jewish Jewels"

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 3, 2013

Asheville Symphony's Classical Christmas Embraces Traditional Favorites

Choral Music, Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 16, 2012

Good Tidings of Comfort and Joy: Carolina Concert Choir’s Annual Christmas Concert

Choral Music, Holiday Concert Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 14, 2012

Brevard Philharmonic Tackles Grieg and Brahms

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 11, 2012

Asheville Lyric Opera's La Traviata A Performance to Remember

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 5, 2012

David Kim Stars in Brevard Philharmonic's Season Opener

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 23, 2012

Falletta and Krieger Star in Brevard Music Center Season Opener

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  June 22, 2012

AmiciMusic's "Wind Power" a Program Not to be Missed

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 21, 2012

Asheville Lyric Opera's The Sound of Music A Resounding Hit

Musical Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 20, 2012

Clifford Leaman Shines in Brevard Philharmonic Orchestra's Saxophone Fest

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 25, 2012

AmiciMusic's Weiser and Cullen Present "The Luck of the Irish"

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 16, 2012

Pan Harmonia Musicians Welcome Spring

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 11, 2012

Phillip Bush Stars in Brevard Philharmonic Orchestra's Beethoven Concerto No. 4

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 19, 2012

Flappers Meet Cowboys in Asheville Lyric's Così fan tutte

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 17, 2012

American Chamber Players Showcase Music of "The Immortals"

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 13, 2012

Pastyme's Winter Concert at Asheville's St. Lawrence's Basilica

Vocal Ensemble Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 17, 2011

NC Stage Company's One-Woman Face-off with 12 Dates of Christmas

Comedy, Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 14, 2011

The Asheville Christmas Show a Mixed Bag of Highs and Lows

Holiday Concert Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 18, 2011

Kavafian-Schub-Shifrin Trio Brings Down the House

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 21, 2011

Asheville Lyric Opera's Madama Butterfly a Strong Season Opener

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 7, 2011

Children's Theatre of Charlotte: Seussical Dazzles and Delights with a Showcase of Talent

Children's Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 24, 2011

Asheville Tango Orchestra Debuts at St. Matthias

Jazz Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 11, 2011

Carolina Baroque's Handel & Salisbury

Chamber Music Media Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 10, 2011

The Witches' Quorum Brews Up A Comic Masterpiece at The Magnetic Field

Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  June 4, 2011

Pan Harmonia is Launched with Tapas de Música

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 17, 2011

Brevard Philharmonic Orchestra plays Liszt and Dvorák

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 1, 2011

Asheville Symphony Masterworks 6 is One of Their Best

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 10, 2011

Asheville Lyric Opera's La Bohéme

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 1, 2011

Sacred Music in a Sacred Space

Choral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 11, 2011

Have Music Will Travel: Classicopia's Terrific Trios

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 6, 2011

Music of Remembrance: Asheville Lyric Opera Stages a Moving Tribute to Holocaust Victims

Voce - The NC Opera Consortium Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 29, 2011

Peabody Trio: Raw Materials Produce Sonic Gauntlet

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 21, 2011

Asheville Symphony's Holiday Pops a Gift of Joy and Wonder

Holiday Concert, Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 12, 2010

Montford Park Players' Reprise of Dickens' A Christmas Carol

Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 9, 2010

Asheville Symphony's Third Masterworks Program a Collaborative Masterpiece

Choral Music, Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 20, 2010

Weiser and Liston-Kraft Smoke the 88 at White Horse Black Mountain

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 23, 2010

A Grand Evening with the Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 9, 2010

Living Legend Rachel Barton Pine Stars in Brevard Philharmonic Opener

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 26, 2010

Pianist Hwa-Jin Kim Takes on the Titans at Diana Wortham

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 12, 2010
  • Event Information:

Brevard Music Center's Season Finale: Effron, Shaham and Two by Brahms

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 8, 2010

Figaro Caps Brevard Music Center's Opera Season

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 5, 2010

Beyond the String Quartet: Mozart and Tchaikovsky at Brevard Music Center

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 3, 2010

Brevard Music Center's "Soloists of Tomorrow" Today: Those Fabulous Concerto Competition Winners

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 1, 2010

Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival Program a Transport of Delight

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 30, 2010

Die Fledermaus at Brevard Music Center inTransylvania County: Who Can Top This?

Operetta Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 8, 2010

Tintypes at Brevard Music Center So Much More Than Entertainment

Musical Theatre Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  June 26, 2010

Opening Night at Brevard Music Center is Bittersweet

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  June 25, 2010

Keowee Chamber Music's Flute Foray

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 23, 2010

The Kruger Brothers Headline Hendersonville Symphony's Season Closer

Bluegrass, Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 22, 2010

The East Coast Chamber Orchestra Triumphs at the Porter Center

Chamber Orchestra Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 23, 2010

The Blue Ridge Orchestra's Love Song to the Earth

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 21, 2010

Trefoil: Three Superb Musicians on a Medieval Mission

Early Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 14, 2010

Hendersonville Symphony's Music in Nature Program a Welcome Harbinger of Spring

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 6, 2010

The Asheville Symphony: Red Hot and Glowing

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 28, 2010

Carolina Pro Musica Revisits the Neglected Seventeenth Century

Early Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 8, 2010

Asheville Lyric Opera's Don Pasquale a Triumph

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 31, 2010

Organist Mark C. Jones's Program One to Remember

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 24, 2010

Cole and Darden Together in Asheville

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 17, 2010

Asheville Choral Society Concert Rings in the Holidays

Choral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 12, 2009

Asheville's Nutcracker a Heart-Warming Holiday Tradition

Dance Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 11, 2009

The Atlanta Boy Choir and Men's Choir Inaugurate Brevard’s Holiday Season

Choral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 21, 2009

Warshauer's Tekeeyah Highlights Brevard Philharmonic Concert

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 15, 2009

Luminescence: The Magical Playing of Steinbeck and Brucksch

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 13, 2009

An Embarrassment of Riches: Sphinx Chamber Orchestra with Elena Urioste and Harlem Quartet

Chamber Orchestra Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 24, 2009

Boudreaux and Weiser Shine in Asheville Lyric Opera Guild Recital

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 8, 2009

An Afternoon Delight: String Chamber Music at St. Matthias Church

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 6, 2009

Eroica Trio Ends the Summer Season for Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 9, 2009

André Raphel Smith and Transylvania Symphony Orchestra End the Season with a Bang: Berlioz!

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 7, 2009

Sounding Echoes of Earlier Times: Brevard Music Center's I Solisti di Brevard

Chamber Orchestra Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 3, 2009

A Fine Afternoon's Repast: Llewellyn, Copland and Beethoven at Brevard Music Center

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 2, 2009

String Quartets at Noon at Transylvania County Library

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 21, 2009

They're at it again: Lockhart and Transylvania Symphony Orchestra Simply Rock the House

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 10, 2009

An Inspired Play of Opposites: Hindemith and Brahms Cap the July 4th Weekend at BMC

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 5, 2009

Keowee Chamber Music: A Delight and Regional Treasure

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  June 18, 2009

Making a Joyful Noise for 30 Years: The Carolina Concert Choir

Choral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 9, 2009

Carolina Baroque's "Baroque Sampler" an Elegant Window into a Bygone Era

Early Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 8, 2009

Singers Sparrow and Locke Steal the Show at Brevard Philharmonic Orchestra's Concert

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 19, 2009

Asheville Symphony's Fifth Masterworks Concert Czeched Out Just Fine

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 14, 2009

Eroica Trio Returns to the Porter Center

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 28, 2009

Countertenors Are Alive and Well: Ian Howell with Tableau Baroque

Early Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 27, 2009

Organist Cameron Carpenter's Eclectic Program Electrifies a Rapt Audience

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 5, 2009

Asheville Lyric Opera's Glittering 10th Anniversary Gala a Triumph

Vocal Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 30, 2009

Music for Midday at the University of North Carolina Asheville

Early Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 28, 2009

The Hendersonville Symphony and Greenville Chorale: Third Annual Messiah

Choral Music, Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 13, 2008

The Asheville Symphony Orchestra's 3 Bs Concert Simply a Stunner

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 16, 2008

The 5 Browns a Smash Hit with Young Asheville

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 25, 2008

Asheville Symphony Orchestra's Masterwork Concert a Sound Tribute to American Icons

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 18, 2008

Brevard Philharmonic Season Opener a Stellar Event

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 28, 2008

A Conversation with Keith Lockhart about Brevard Music Center

Music Feature by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 5, 2008

Brevard Music Center: Transylvania Symphony Orchestra Plays Triumphant Season Finale

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 8, 2008

BMC: Music for Two Pianos a Rare Treat

Chamber Music, Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 6, 2008

BMC Honors Two of Its Own

Orchestral Music Preview by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 3, 2008

BMC's Young Transylvania Symphony Orchestra Reaches for the Stars

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 25, 2008

An Embarrassment of Riches: Díaz Trio Redux at BMC

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 16, 2008

A Sumptuous Magic Flute at BMC

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  July 3, 2008

BMC's Celebratory Tribute to the late Bill Boggs, Jr.

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  June 20, 2008

Pastyme was Good Company

Vocal Ensemble, Vocal Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  May 25, 2008

The Anthony & Beard Variety Show

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  April 6, 2008

The Fab Four: Turtle Island String Quartet

Chamber Music, Jazz Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  March 28, 2008

Cultural Ambassadors Extraordinaire: Perú Negro

World Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  February 15, 2008

L'Orfeo and Asheville's Echo Early Music Festival

Early Music, Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 30, 2008

Legends: Von Stade and Ramey with Katz

Recital Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 15, 2008

Keowee Chamber Players at St. Matthias Episcopal Church

Chamber Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  January 13, 2008

Amahl and the Night Visitors at Brevard College's Porter Center

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  December 9, 2007

"American Impressions" by the ASO

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  November 17, 2007

A Parallel Universe: Roméo et Juliette at Opera Carolina

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 20, 2007

Don Giovanni at the Asheville Lyric Opera

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  October 13, 2007

Asheville Symphony Orchestra Season Opener

Orchestral Music Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  September 15, 2007

BMC: La Bohéme

Opera Review by Laura Pollie Johnson,  August 2, 2007