John T. Posadas, viola, enjoys an active career as a chamber musician, recitalist, teacher, and orchestral player. Recitals have taken him across the country and abroad with appearances at the Kennedy Center, Severance Hall, Tanglewood, Aspen, Interlochen, the Juilliard School, Chautauqua, Canada, Germany and Mexico. His performances have been aired on PBS and Aspen's Plum TV network, and his performances have been heard on NPR stations across the country. As a chamber musician, he has won top prizes at the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition and the Chamber Music International Competition and has collaborated with many of the world's leading artists including Edgar Meyer, Alex Kerr, James Ehnes, Joseph Silverstein, and members of the Cleveland, Muir, Pro Arte, and Concord Quartets. He is currently the violist for the Baumer Quartet and the Ars Nova String Trio. Orchestrally, he has held principal and associate principal viola positions with the Naples Philharmonic, the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra, and the Erie Philharmonic Orchestra.
An advocate for contemporary music, John has worked closely with many of today's leading composers including Joan Tower, Augusta Read Thomas, and Elliott Carter. He has given world premieres at the Aspen Music Festival, Tanglewood, the Chautauqua Music Festival, and the Deer Valley Music Festival to name a few.
A sought-after clinician and teacher, he has taught masterclasses and lessons at institutions across America, including the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, the Colorado Suzuki Institute, and he has served as a faculty member at Chamber Music of the Rockies in Beaver Creek, CO, the Brevard Chamber Music Seminar, the Crowden Music Center Chamber Music Workshop, the Sequoia Chamber Music Workshop, and the Monterey Chamber Music Workshop. For his extraordinary service in the arts, John was named an official Kentucky Colonel at the age of 13. He is currently a resident artist at the University of South Florida's School of Music, where he is adjunct professor of viola and chamber music.
John T. Posadas is underwritten by Mr. & Mrs. Albert S. McGhee.
Name: John (JT) Posadas
Hometown: Henderson, KY
At what age did you begin playing your instrument? Violin at 3, switched to viola in college.
Who have been your greatest musical influences? Karen Ritscher, Jeffrey Irvine and Lynne Ramsey for teaching me how to play free freely, expressively and without injury. James Dunham, Norman Fischer and Kenneth Goldsmith for their inspiration and guidance in string quartet playing. My past and current colleagues and musical partners.
Who are your favorite composers? Beethoven, Bartok, Shostakovich, Stravinsky and Haydn.
What career path would you have taken had you not chosen music? I've never been able to successfully answer this question. What I can say is that I originally started out as a pre-med student in college.
What's currently playing on your iPod or CD player? Case in Theory, Radiohead, Weezer, the Mullets, Wilco, Bon Iver, Artemis Quartet and the Vogler Quartet.
Your hobbies and interests: Outside of chamber music and teaching, my interests revolve mainly around sports, food, and my two cats Andy and Sophie. I really enjoy playing tennis, basketball, golf and soccer. Food-wise, I love to try new restaurants and am constantly adapting old and creating new recipes.
Some little-known, yet interesting facts about you: I am an honorary Kentucky Colonel (yes, just like "Colonel" Sanders!).
Funniest concert moment: I had to borrow a student viola for an orchestra concert, and during a very soft passage the D-string popped off very loudly, sending a cloud of rosin in the air. No one had extra strings with them at the time, and I had to play the whole concert on three strings!
Daily practice rituals: You should always stretch before and after. You don't want to pull anything, eh?
The question you're asked most often about your instrument (and your answer): This happens at airports all the time. The security guard or TSA agent will ask, "What's the difference between a violin and a fiddle?" (I play the viola, by the way.) The answer, of course, is, "A violin has strings ... a fiddle has straaaaaaaaaaangs!"
Your favorite part about playing in the Naples Philharmonic: The viola section is fantastic! Great players, great people!