Violist Dawson White has a musical profile that ranges from the symphonic world to collaborations with contemporary composers and visual artists. His solo appearances have included performing as a finalist in the MTNA National Competition in Toronto, Ontario and solo viola in Strauss’s Don Quixote with the Baylor Symphony. Dawson has performed with the Houston Grand Opera, Houston Ballet, Houston Composers Orchestra, Opera in the Heights, Dallas Chamber Orchestra, and was Associate Principal in the inaugural YouTube Symphony in Carnegie Hall under Michael Tilson Thomas. A graduate of Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, Dawson organized an immensely successful concert series at the Rice Art Gallery titled New Art/New Music where he commissioned composers to write music based on the artwork. He is also a co-founder of the Cypress Symphony in Northwest Houston and serves as Principal Violist and Director of Digital Media. Mr. White is Adjunct Professor of Viola at the University of St. Thomas and UST Music Preparatory School and regularly performs with the Symphony of Southeast Texas and the Axiom Quartet.
Helen Callus has an incredible talent as a performer AND teacher. In my lessons, I could play an etude or a concerto and she expected the same beautiful quality of sound that could be heard at the back of the hall. She had an amazing way of diagnosing problems in my playing and then providing a detailed, technical solution, which allowed me to express a variety of musical colors. She also committed a large amount of time outside of lessons, which included answering hundreds of emails, questions about the school/campus, and any other random questions I had. I learned a tremendous amount about who I am as a violist and artist during my time in Santa Barbara, and her great sense of humor and passion for the viola made music-making an awesome experience. I’m really looking forward to the next time we work together! — Dawson White, University of Baylor, Texas