A native of Tucson, Joseph Rousos-Hammond began playing the violin in his elementary school orchestra program, and also participated in Tucson Junior Strings and the Tucson Philharmonia Youth Orchestra. He attended Indiana University where he received a Bachelor of Music with Distinction as a student of Koichiro Harada, Paul Biss, and Mark Kaplan. Upon graduation, he completed a Master of Music degree at the Chicago College of Performing Arts where he was a student of Chicago Symphony Concertmaster Robert Chen.
Prior to joining the Tucson Symphony, Mr. Rousos-Hammond served as Principal 2nd Violin of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and was a member of the Owensboro Symphony Orchestra and the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic. He has attended numerous festivals, including, most recently, Manchester Music Festival and Pacific Music Festival. As a chamber musician, he has performed with artists including the Pacifica String Quartet, Orion Weiss, and Stefan Hersh.
When did you start playing the violin? I started when I was in 4th grade.
Do you play any other instruments? I started playing the French horn a year after starting the violin and I didn't really choose to focus on violin until I started college.
What makes your instrument special? The greatest composers wrote their greatest music for the violin, and the violin lets you share that music with people in a very personal and expressive way.
If you could play a different instrument, what would it be? Horn
Favorite composers: The Three B's, Mozart, Mahler, Strauss, Wagner, and Sibelius.
Guilty musical secret: Disney music can be pretty good sometimes...
Hobbies: Hiking, watching sports, travel, learning about random things on Wikipedia.
What are your three favorite movies? The Naked Gun Trilogy