Violist Martin Andersen has been a member of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra since 1979. He is also an active freelance musician in the New York/New Jersey metro area, and he has served as Principal Viola of the Hudson Chamber Symphony, Hawthorne Chamber Orchestra, Korean Symphony of New York, Elysian Symphony Orchestra and OMPTI Orchestra. These activities have resulted in three tours to Japan, one to Korea (performing with New York City Symphony at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul), two residencies/tours in Ireland with the NJSO and a US tour with tenor Andrea Bocelli. Since 1990, he has spent his Augusts performing orchestral and chamber music at the Grand Teton Music Festival in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
Andersen has appeared as soloist with the Hawthorne Chamber Symphony, Hudson Chamber Symphony and South Orange Chamber Orchestra and at the Bedford Springs Music Festival.
Teaching has always been important to Andersen’s musical life; while still in his teens, he served as a tutor to some of his teacher’s younger students. He maintains a private teaching studio of violin and viola students of all ages and levels, and he specializes in Suzuki Talent Education (“Suzuki Method”). He was founding faculty of Preucil School of Music, taught at the Preparatory Division of Brooklyn College and was on the faculty of Seton Hall University. He most recently served as artist-in-residence at Stevens Institute of Technology, performing, teaching and coaching chamber music. Since the NJSO Youth Orchestras’ founding in 1990, he has coached the NJSO Academy Orchestra and in the NJSO Academy chamber music program, including the Lieberson Ensemble of top Academy Orchestra string students. As a member of the GNYO and NJSO string quartets, he has performed and taught masterclasses throughout New Jersey, including at Rowan University.
Pestering his parents for a violin, Martin began studies at age 8 in Iowa City, Iowa, with Doris Preucil, a pioneer of Suzuki Talent Education. Switching his performance priority to viola in his teens, he graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree Cum Laude from the University of Iowa and obtained his Master of Music degree from Boston University, studying with Walter Trampler, Eugene Lehner and William Kroll. Andersen spent five summers at Kneisel Hall Chamber Music School, where his teachers included Leslie Parnas, Roman Totenberg, Artur Balsam, John Graham, Karen Tuttle, Ani Kavafian, Georgio Ciompi and Toby Appel. He has also studied privately with Karen Tuttle, John Graham, Joyce Robbins and Toby Appel, the latter made possible by a three-year Mellon Foundation Professional Development Grant.
Andersen and his wife, Christina, a floral designer, live in Hoboken.