Benjamin Shute

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Violin

Oklahoma City University: Violin Faculty
Oklahoma City Philharmonic: Section First Violin
The Highlands Duo
CSSM faculty since 2007

DMA BM (New England Conservatory), Diplom KA (Hochschule für Musik Freiburg)

Benjamin Shute joins the violin faculty of the Wanda L. Bass School of Music of Oklahoma City University in fall 2019.

He has enjoyed diverse performance activities internationally on modern and period instruments. Solo engagements have included collaborations with modern- and period-instrument orchestras in the States and Europe in concertos from the 17th to 20th centuries (e.g. Corelli, Vivaldi, Bach, Beethoven, Paganini, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Sibelius). 

As chamber musician, he has served on the faculty of festivals in the USA, France, Italy, and Japan and been enriched by collaborations with diverse colleagues including orchestral principals (Pittsburgh, RAI Turin, Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Boston Baroque), chamber musicians (Parker, Jasper, Formosa, Blair, Carpe Diem, Diderot quartets), and faculty of conservatories in the USA, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, and Turkey.  He performs regularly on baroque violin with harpsichordist Anastasia Abu Bakar as the Highlands Duo, with whom he has appeared at venues including Schloss Bad Krozingen, Landgrafenschloss Marburg, Wheaton Conservatory, Dickinson College, and other venues throughout the New England, Mid-Atlantic, and Midwest states. 

Orchestral activities include serving as concertmaster/soloist with the Boston Chamber Orchestra, the conductorless Oklahoma Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra, Tactus, and the orchestras of the New England Conservatory and Hochschule für Musik Freiburg.  He also served as co-founding director of the NEC Early Music Society from 2009 to 2012 and presently holds a tier A first violin position with the Oklahoma City Philharmonic.

Recordings include a recent release of the complete Brahms sonatas with pianist Kai-Ching Chang, concertmaster solos with the Boston Chamber Orchestra, and the Acis CD “In Sara Levy’s Salon” with the Raritan Players on period instruments.

Benjamin Shute received early training from Kathleen Hastings and Lee Snyder before studying at the New England Conservatory and the state conservatories of Freiburg and Frankfurt, where his principal teachers included Rainer Kussmaul (first concertmaster, Berliner Philharmoniker), Bernhard Forck (concertmaster, Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin), Lucy Chapman, and Masuko Ushioda. 

A committed teacher, he held posts at Dickinson College, Cairn University, Cecil College, and Oklahoma Baptist University prior to joining the OCU faculty.   He has also made guest appearances at institutions including MIT, Rutgers, Bucknell, and universities in Ohio, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Kansas, and Oklahoma.

Among his other activities, he is the author of the book Sei Solo: Symbolum? The Theology of J. S. Bach’s Solo Violin Works (Pickwick/Wipf & Stock, 2016) and has published critical editions including reconstructions of J. S. Bach’s lost D-minor violin concerto BWV 1052R and incompletely surviving D-major sinfonia BWV 1045 through PRB Productions, which have been performed at venues including the Franz Liszt Academy Budapest and the Mecklenburg State Theater (Germany).  His compositions have been heard in the States and abroad at venues including the London Festival of Contemporary Church Music.