Music and the other arts are the most potent demonstration that, in the heart, we are all one community.
~ Jan Swafford
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Anne Marie Thomas
Anne Marie is a clarinetist, administrator and teacher. She has performed for over a decade with The Augusta Symphony, Augusta Choral Society and Augusta Opera. Anne Marie created the Augusta Preparatory Day School Music and Dance conservatory (voted Best of Augusta in 2010), and has maintained a successful clarinet studio for seventeen years. Her students’ honors include All-State Band, District, Governors Honors, and The Augusta Symphony Young Artist Concerto Competition.
Her teachers were Hymie Voxman, Dr. Maurita Meade, Doug Graham, Laura Arden, and James Pyne. Anne Marie graduated with honors from The Ohio State University with a bachelor’s degree in clarinet performance. During her senior year, she earned the Donald E. McGinnis award, given annually to one band member whose musicianship, leadership, and personality emulate the professional standards of Donald E. McGinnis, who served as the director of bands for twenty seven years.
violin, composer, conductor
Laura is the director of the Orchestra and string program at Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School in Augusta. She is the founder and director of the Carolina String Academy in Aiken and the conductor of the Aiken Youth Orchestras. She is an adjunct professor at Augusta State University and the University of South Carolina, Aiken, and teaches violin and viola privately at the Carolina Academy of Music and for the ASU Conservatory Program. She also served for several years as conductor of the Greater Augusta Youth Orchestras.
She has extensive experience as a chamber musician, including eleven years with the Augusta Symphony String Quartet, three years with the Magellan String Quartet as artist-in-residence at Georgia Southern University, and four years with the Southern Arts Piano Trio. Laura’s students, colleagues and audiences benefit from her expertise and versatility as a music arranger.
She has participated in music festivals in New York, California, Michigan, North Carolina, and Maine, and has performed throughout the United States and Europe, most recently in Weill Recital Hall in New York as a member of the ARCO Chamber Orchestra. She was awarded a 2001 research grant to attend the International Colourstrings Symposium in Helsinki, Finland.
Laura has been a member of Symphony Orchestra Augusta since 1987, serving one year as concertmaster, ten years as principal second violin, and currently as assistant concertmaster. Laura’s students have won numerous awards and competitions. She also directs the ASU Summer String Camp, as well as the ASU Honors String Jamboree, and coaches chamber music for the ASU Chamber Music Camp. She received a Bachelor of Music from North Carolina School of the Arts, a Master of Music from the University of Southern California, and a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Georgia.
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