Karen Johnson began her musical studies in her hometown of Gilbert, Arizona, at
the age of 4. At age 10, she became the pupil of Dr. William Magers at Arizona
State University and under his tutelage won such competitions as the Corpus Christi
International Young artist Competition, the Midland-Odessa National Young Artist
Competition, and the Music Teachers National Association Yamaha String Competition.
In 1996, Ms. Johnson began her studies at
the Juilliard School as the pupil of Joel Smirnoff and while attending school
was the winner of the Juilliard Sibelius Violin Concerto Competition, the Hudson
Valley Philharmonic and the Jefferson Symphony Competitions, as well as the Music
Academy of the West Festival Competition.
completing her Bachelor's degree, Ms. Johnson was first violinist of the Vaux
String Quartet which performed throughout the Eastern United States, including
performances at New York's Alice Tully Hall. She also served as Concertmaster
of the Juilliard orchestras, performing the solo violin parts of Richard Strauss's
Le Bourgeois Gentilhome, Symphonia domestica, and Ein Heldenleben, all at New
York's Lincoln Center.
Ms. Johnson completed
her Masters degree at the University of Maryland, College Park, in 2002, studying
with William Preucil, Concertmaster of the Cleveland Orchestra and former first
violinist of the Cleveland Quartet.
has performed in concerts throughout the United States and Europe and has worked
with a variety of renowned conductors and musicians, such as James DePriest, Sergiu
Commissiona, Keith Lockhart, Yuri Temerkanov, Jamie Laredo, and Joseph Silverstein.
2002, Ms. Johnson has served as the Concertmaster of the Richmond Symphony. She
is married to Karl Johnson, bass trombonist in the "President's Own" U.S. Marine
Band, and is the proud mom of Julia.
soloist and chamber and orchestral musician, Ms. Johnson's playing has been applauded
for by the following reviews.
and warmth of tone
Santa Barbara Independent
Johnson made the Vaughan WIlliams sound like a masterpiece when she played
it in rdcital and her recording (BR147) has comparable sweep and portent
"Bridge's impressionistic miniatures nicley reduce the scale and relax the
tension between the bing sonatas. Johnson emphasizes their color and atmospherics."
"Kong is a fine pianist, but more importantly for these purposes she is a supremely
gifed accompanist, a stylish and reliable partner enchancing music in which the
violin is the dominant voice (BR147)."
Clarke Bustard, Music Editor
Richmond Tines- Dispatch
Sparkling and courageous
A superior musician who also conveys
charm and approachability
Richmond Style Weekly
Be our guest, listen to a MP3 cut from the CD,