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Aaron Westman - YPCO, Music Director

Aaron Westman, Young People's Chamber Orchestra, Music Director
Aaron Westman was a metal-head growing up in Sonoma County. He now plays the electric guitar of the 17th-century. Described as a “brilliant virtuoso violinist” (Early Music America), Westman is equally active on violin and viola. Since 2005, he has performed as a chamber, principal player or soloist with most of the major historical performance ensembles on the West Coast and toured extensively throughout the world. As a principal player, Westman works regularly with American Bach Soloists, Archetti, Ars Minerva Opera Company, Bach Collegium San Diego, Hawaii Performing Arts Festival, Musica Angelica, New Hampshire Music Festival, Pacific Music Works and Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra (since 2006), and he has played with Hip Hop Orchestra Ensemble Mik Nawooj and San Francisco Opera Orchestra. He has toured to Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru and all over the United States, as well as Austria, Germany, Hungary, Italy and Spain, frequently with Orchester Wiener Akademie and the actor John Malkovich. 
Westman co-directs the chamber ensemble Agave, which recently signed with Schwalbe & Partners artist management. Agave has recorded six albums––their last three focus on historically excluded repertoire and feature the star countertenor Reginald L. Mobley. Early Music America said about their 2018 release, Peace In Our Time, “The really impressive thing about this album is its emotional wallop,” and SF Classical Voice called out Westman as “expressive and virtuosic on solo violin.” Their latest release, American Originals, features all composers of color, and is their first release on the Acis Productions label. Westman
 is also Associate Director of the Live Oak Baroque Orchestra, which performs regularly at Schroeder Hall, and violist in the Sylvestris Quartet, which will continue its residency at Hawaii Performing Arts Festival in the Summer of 2022. 
Westman holds degrees from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and Wesleyan University. His principal teachers were Geraldine Walther, Elizabeth Blumenstock, Stanley Ritchie, Alan de Veritch and Theodore Arm. Westman is currently on faculty at Mills College, and in the Fall of 2021, he joins the inspiring faculty of Sonoma State University, where he has previously guest taught a number of times. He also taught for three years at California Institute of the Arts. Westman has directed the Young People’s Chamber Orchestra since 2013, where he loves introducing students to leadership and critical thinking skills, historically excluded repertoire, inspiring guest artists, and he does the same in Italy each summer as a faculty member and orchestra director at Music Adventure.In his spare time, he is a recording engineer and producer. 
In 2019, Westman and his wife, violinist Anna Washburn, purchased a home in Santa Rosa with the help of SRS board member Judy Chen. On the winter solstice of 2020, Anna and Westman welcomed their first child, Olive. 

Banner photo by Susan and Neil Silverman Photography

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