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Department of Music Welcomes Violinist Guy Harrison to Faculty


The Music Department at Arkansas State University recently added violinist Guy Harrison to its faculty.

Originally from Australia, Harrison soon will complete his doctoral degree in violin performance at Michigan State University under the direction of Dr. Walter Verdehr. He holds degrees from the University of Adelaide (Bachelor of Music – Honors), and Michigan State University (Master of Music). 

“I am very thankful to be given this opportunity to teach at ASU and to be a part of such a strong music department,” Harrison said. “I look forward to assisting our local string programs in any way possible and to begin expanding the program here at ASU.”

One of his first major initiatives will be organizing the ASU Youth Orchestra for students in grades 6-12.

Harrison is in demand as a performer and has held positions in Michigan as the acting concertmaster with the Jackson Symphony Orchestra and associate concertmaster of the Lansing Symphony Orchestra and Jackson Symphony Orchestras as well as principal second violin in the Lubbock Symphony Orchestra in Texas.

Before moving to the U.S., Harrison performed regularly with both the Adelaide and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras. He has also performed with the South Bend, Saginaw, Traverse, Northwest Indiana and Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestras. Harrison has performed extensively in Australia, and has toured the U.S., China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Singapore, New Caledonia as well as performing at Canada’s Winterlude Festival.

Harrison is highly sought after as a teacher and clinician. While in the U.S., he has established studios in Michigan, Texas and Indiana. He is a certified teacher and has taught in the Texas public school system. In Texas, Harrison’s middle and high school orchestras received sweepstakes ratings at contest each year, the highest ratings possible. His students have succeeded at the All-State level and have gone on to study music in college.

His duties at ASU include teaching violin and viola lessons, and teaching music theory.  He is assisting conductor Neale Bartee with the ASU Orchestra and is serving as its concertmaster.  A large part of his duties involve recruiting string players for the ASU Orchestra program.  Dr. Bartee stated that “ASU is very fortunate to have Guy Harrison on the faculty as a full time violin artist performer/teacher. He is a fabulous musician and experienced teacher who should draw many students to study strings at ASU.”

Harrison will perform on ASU Music Department Faculty Recitals on Sept. 20 and Oct. 18.  Both concerts will take place in Riceland Hall, Fowler Center, at 7:30 p.m.  They are free and the public is invited to attend.  He will play a free recital on the evening of Oct. 22 at the University of Arkansas-Little Rock.  Harrison will be the guest performer for the Treble Clef Music Club at the Craighead County/Jonesboro Public Library Round Room on Feb. 14, 2013, at 7 p.m.  This is also free, and the public is invited to attend.

One of his special projects will be initiating and conducting the ASU Youth Orchestra for students in Grades 6-12 who have had at least one year of instruction on a bowed string instrument.  The group will meet on Saturdays from 9-11 a.m., on Sept. 22, 29, and October 6, 13, 20, and 27.  Rehearsals will take place in the ASU Choir Room, Fine Arts Center, Room 144.

The ASU Youth Orchestra will perform Monday Oct. 29, at 7 p.m., Riceland Hall, Fowler Center.  For more information, please contact the ASU Continuing Education and Community Outreach, website, or email Harrison, gharrison@astate.edu, or call (870) 972-9381.

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