Rice University's Shepherd School of Music , BM
Alexa Sangbin Thomson, (NZ/USA), is currently pursuing her Master of Music degree at Rice University's Shepherd School of Music in Houston, Texas. She completed her Bachelor of Music with first-class Honours at the New Zealand School of Music in 2014, and the following year completed a Professional Performance Certificate at Pennsylvania State University. During her undergraduate studies she had the opportunity to play as a soloist with the Nelson Symphony Orchestra and the Capital Performing Arts Orchestra on multiple occasions, with repertoire including the Walton Viola Concerto and Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante.
Since completing her undergraduate studies she has held the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra's orchestral fellowship position, served as assistant principal for the Williamsport Symphony and Pennsylvania Center Orchestra, and is currently a substitute violist for the Houston Symphony Orchestra. She has also attended the Aspen Music Festival, Miami Summer Music Festival and the Schleswig-Holstein Festival in Germany.
Additionally, Alexa has endeavoured to continue the work of one of her teachers, Dr. Timothy Deighton (Penn State) with her project, "Viola Aotearoa: The Next Generation" in which she recorded several NZ solo viola works in studio (supported by the Judith Clark Memorial Fellowship), and presented a series of outreach performances using these works and their stories throughout the community venues of Houston (supported by the Sviatoslav Richter Fund for musical outreach). Through this project she was able to share the unique culture and music of New Zealand. She will perform selections of this solo NZ viola repertoire at the 44th International Viola Congress in Wellington, New Zealand in September 2017. Alexa currently plays on a viola made by Carleen Hutchins, provided by a generous scholarship grant from the Virtu Foundation.