Chris Gokelman is the winner of the 2014/15 YOSA Concerto Competition and will perform William Walton’s Viola Concerto with the San Antonio Symphony on January 18, 2015. Chris currently studies with Allyson Dawkins, Principal Violist of the San Antonio Symphony. He is a past student of Christopher Parsons, has studied with Roger Myers at the University of Texas at Austin, and has participated in a master class with Peter Slowik of Oberlin Conservatory.
Chris is a senior at St. Anthony Catholic High School and has been playing the viola for nearly six years. He has been a part of YOSA since 2009, serving as Principal Violist for both the YOSA Sinfonietta Strings and YOSA Symphony Orchestras and as the current Principal for the YOSA Philharmonic, of which he has been a member for four years. During his time with the YOSA Philharmonic, Chris has performed alongside notable soloists Edgar Meyer, Abdiel Vázquez, Richard Stoltzman, Tracy Silverman, Kenji Bunch, Christopher O’Riley, and Branford Marsalis (in February 2015), and has played with YOSA during the 2012 England and Wales Tour. Prior to his participation in the YOSA Philharmonic, Chris was invited to be a member of the Orchestra of the Incarnate Word/University of the Incarnate Word as an eighth grader.
For the past two years, Chris has been selected to participate in the Castleman Quartet Program East, founded by virtuoso violinist Charles Castleman, in Fredonia, New York. There he has studied with Charles Castleman, Allyson Dawkins, Laura Bossert, and Basil Vendryes, and performed in both chamber and solo recitals. He has also participated in the Summer Music Institute at the University of Texas, San Antonio, in 2011, during which he performed with the top chamber group. Chris has served as the Principal Violist for the Texas Music Educator’s Association Region 12 Orchestra for the past two years, and was the Principal Violist for the Texas All-State String Orchestra in 2014.
An active liturgical musician, he has performed for the Taizé Pilgrimage in Austin, Texas, has been a frequent convention musician for several major publisher showcases during the national conventions of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians since 2012, and has been a regular violist for church services and civic events since 2010. Chris has also been a featured performer of the annual American Guild of Organists “Organ Plus” Concert Series since 2013. As a member of his school’s jazz band, Chris was recognized as an exemplary soloist during the ensemble’s perfect score performance in the 2013 Texas Christian Interscholastic League All-State Competition. In 2014, he was awarded gold medal in the Division 1 of the Central Catholic Button Band Solo Competition.
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