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Biography

QUINTON MORRIS, violin 
Dr. Quinton Morris enjoys a multifaceted career as a concert violinist, chamber musician, teacher, director and founder of The Young Eight String Octet.  He has performed solo and chamber music performances in the United States, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and Middle East.  Notable performances include concerto performances with the Seattle, Thalia, Renton and Tacoma Youth Symphonies, Raleigh Chamber Orchestra and Orchestra Seattle.  He has toured as a concerto soloist with the Kenningston Youth Symphony performing in venues, such as the Champs-Elyseé Theatre in Paris, France, the Guildhall School in London, England and the Roman Catholic Theatre in Bohn, Germany.  As a recitalist and collaborator, he performs and speaks frequently at Seattle’s Town Hall, Seattle Chamber Music Society and other esteemed venues around the country.

Dr. Morris is the recipient of numerous awards including the Seattle University Alumni Association’s Outstanding Academic and Arts Faculty Award, The Boston Conservatory Chamber Music Honors Competition, the Louisiana Junior Philharmonic Orchestra Young Artist’s Concerto Competition, Seattle Philharmonic Concerto Competition, the NAACP ACT-SO Competition, the North Carolina Federation of Music Clubs String Competition and the Ebony Showcase Music Award. Most recently, Dr. Morris received top honors and the “Distinguished” prize at the 2010 Ibla Grand Prize World Recital Competition in Sicily, Italy.

As the artistic/executive director and founder of The Young Eight String Octet, Dr. Morris has performed with his group in chamber music recitals across the country.
The Young Eight, America’s only string octet is comprised of distinguished string players from the nation’s most prestigious music schools and conservatories. The Young Eight have performed in New York City for performances at York College’s Distinguished Artists Chamber Music Series, Music Mondays Chamber Music Series and a host of educational school residencies. In addition, The Young Eight debuted at the Jewel Box Chamber Music Series at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, the Young Artists Afternoon Concert Series at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in Philadelphia, and Pigott Auditorium at Seattle University. The Young Eight celebrated its fifth anniversary with a national Black college tour and hosted its inaugural Emerging Composers Competition for young composers. The Young Eight served as Artists in Residence at a number of universities and chamber music societies, including; the University of Washington International Chamber Music World Series, Raleigh Chamber Music Guild, Morehouse College, Fayetteville State University, Johnson C. Smith University, the University of Texas-Austin and Wichita State University. The Young Eight perform regularly at Seattle Symphony’s Benaroya Hall and have received honors for their Seattle performances by the King County Executive County Council, Seattle Weekly (Best New Chamber Music Group for 2005), Chamber Music America and Colors Northwest Magazine. The Young Eight have also served as Artists in Residence at the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, North Carolina School of the Arts, Huston-Tillotson University, Longhorn Music Camp and the University of Texas-Austin.  The Young Eight also received a Medal of Honor by the United State Military for their commitment to public and community service.

Administratively, Dr. Morris was the youngest member sworn on as vice-chair for the King County Children and Family Commission. He served as secretary on the Children and Family Commission Executive Board, and as a member of The Youth Involvement Executive Board and Xavier University Executive Student Body Association Board. He has also served as administrative assistant to The Boston Conservatory String Department chair and Boston Pops and Symphony member Andrew Mark. In addition, Dr. Morris was recognized during Black History Month by the State of Washington’s House of Representatives for his accomplishments as both a teacher and musician.

During the summer of 2002, Dr. Morris served as a teacher’s assistant to Walter Schwede, at Seattle Youth Symphony’s Marrowstone Music Festival. He has served on the artist roster and string faculty for the Austin Chamber Music Center, Boston Arts Academy High School and Huston-Tillotson University. This past summer, Dr. Morris participated in two recording projects, respectively: a solo CD of works by African and African-American composers (Albany Records) and a duo CD of soprano and violin repertoire with soprano Indra Thomas, (Naxos Records).

Dr. Morris began his studies at Xavier University of Louisiana, where he studied Pre-Law and violin privately with Rachel Jordan. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from The North Carolina School of the Arts and a Master of Music degree from The Boston Conservatory. He also earned a Doctor of Musical Arts at The University of Texas at Austin, where he studied violin with Daniel Ching, first violinist of the Miró String Quartet. His past teachers include Lynn Chang, Aaron Rosand, Irina Muresanu and Walter Schwede. Most recently, Dr. Morris participated in the Violin Intensive Program for Aspiring Soloists with Professor Aaron Rosand in New York.

Dr. Morris is currently the Director of Chamber and Instrumental Music and Assistant Professor of Music at Seattle University. His octet, The Young Eight, serves as Artists in Residence.

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