Dr. Eric Olson, Director of the Pre-Conservatory Program at Shattuck-St. Mary’s School, earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Violin Performance from Michigan State University where he studied with Robert Dan and I-fu Wang. He earned his Doctorate in Musical Arts in Violin Performance at the University of Minnesota where he studied with Sally O’Reilly. In addition to his violin studies, Dr. Olson studied viola with James Vanvalkenburg (assistant principal viola of the Detroit Symphony) and Robert Dan, and piano with Deborah Moriarty, Michael Alan Nathan, and Penny Draper. He also received a Master’s degree in Music Theory from Michigan State University.
Before assuming his current position, Dr. Olson served as Adjunct Professor of Violin, Viola, and Music Theory at Bemidji State University. Some of his performance appearances include a guest artist recital at Western Michigan University, a guest artist performance for the Schubert Club celebrating composer Dominick Argento in Minneapolis, MN, and a concert tour of Bemidji, MN and Alexandria, MN for the Minnesota Music Teacher’s Association. He also has extensive orchestral experience and has performed with the American Ballet Theatre, the Minnesota Oratorio Society, the Minneapolis Pops Orchestra, the Kalamazoo Symphony, the West Michigan Symphony, the Lansing Symphony, the Battle Creek Symphony, the Adrian Symphony, the Jackson Symphony, and the Midland Symphony.
Awards he has received include performance fellowships and Music Theory teaching assistantships from Michigan State University and the University of Minnesota. Additionally, Dr. Olson has won over a dozen grants to fund guest artist residencies, performances, master classes, and educational outreach. He was also First Place Winner of the “Artistic Ambassador Competition” sponsored by the Minnesota Music Teacher’s Association in 2012 and again in 2014. Dr. Olson has been teaching Violin, Viola, and Music Theory at the collegiate level for the past seven years, and has maintained an active private violin/viola studio for over 10 years.