Thomas Ezra Cornell Collum | Violinist

“You are a fantastic, engaged leader; and such beautiful solos”

Gustav Meier

Antonio Gragnani, C. 1770, Livorno

Du Bois Orchestra
Emmanuel Music
Cape Ann Symphony
Pheonix, Orchestra Reborn
Bach Collegium San Diego
Red Door Chamber Music
Apollo Ensemble of Boston
Hotchkiss Philharmonic
Bruckner Festival Orchestra

Leadership Positions
Du Bois Orchestra
Bruckner Festival Orchestra
International Mayfest Chamber Orchestra
Cornell Symphony Orchestra
Cornell Chamber Orchestra
Symphony in the Valley, Aspen

Training and Guidance
Cornell University, 2014

Daniel Stepner
Markus Placci
Marc Rovetti
Ariana Kim
Joseph Lin
Roberta Crawford

My story

Violin has been my biggest passion since before my earliest memories. My mother is probably to responsible, having inundated me with the ballet suites and other symphony works by Tchaikovsky into her belly while she was pregnant with me. Throughout my early childhood, my infatuation led me to listening to classical music to fall asleep, make anatomically accurate violin orchestras for my stuffed animals, watch all of the Disney Movies only for the sake of miming the violin part to the soundtracks.

One of the earliest and most impressionistic experiences for me was attending the concert of a family friend, a professional flautist, who let me sit in a chair in the back of the second violin section during the sound check before the concert. They were playing Dvorak’s 9th Symphony, The New World. To this day, I remember how compelling the technique was of the 5th chair fist violinist, several years before I began learning to play.

Throughout childhood and into early adulthood, my path with violin was circuitous. Despite being lead astray by the notion that the proverbial ship had sailed and that I would never cut it as a professional violinist because I was too far behind, I always kept taking lessons and practicing on the side as a hobby but while emotionally investing more than in my more “practical” and “primary” pursuits. I tried other things and I lived other lives until I realized that those other lives were just not working for me. So I finally took the plunge and dedicated myself to finding a way to make life as a violinist work.

My path has been so very atypical compared to most of my peers and colleagues in the music industry, but in some ways, I value that the most and I know that I am absolutely doing what I’m meant to do. I’m the luckiest person for getting to dedicating all of my being to what I love most; violin. I’m now living my best life.


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