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Cellist Richard Aaron Appointed to SFCM Faculty

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The celebrated teacher will start in Fall 2024 as professor of cello.

August 21, 2023 by Mark Taylor

The San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM) announced today the appointment of award-winning and critically acclaimed cellist and educator Richard Aaron to the role of professor of cello. 

Aaron, who is currently on faculty at The Juilliard School and the University of Michigan, will join SFCM full-time and accept students into his studio starting the fall of 2024.  

“It is a great honor to be invited to the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. There is a wonderful pedagogical cello tradition in San Francisco which I am very excited to be joining,” Aaron said.

Aaron is described as a “sought-after professor of cello whose methods of teaching have garnered global acclaim.”

His students have won prestigious awards, including first prizes at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, the ISANG YUN Competition in South Korea, and the Naumburg International Cello Competition in New York City. 

As a mentor and teacher, Aaron has also influenced many students who hold coveted roles at notable orchestras and chamber ensembles. 

“Richard Aaron's extraordinary work is evidenced through his exceptional students who hold premier positions throughout the world,” said SFCM President David Stull. “He is a brilliant colleague and musician and his impact on our profession has been profoundly transformative. I am honored to welcome Richard to this marvelous faculty.” 

Born in West Hartford, Connecticut, Aaron was previously on the faculty at the Cleveland Institute of Music and the New England Conservatory. He has conducted masterclasses in many countries across four continents, including at many of the leading music schools in North America.

Since 2003, Aaron has been on the faculty of the Aspen Music Festival. He  has also taught at many other summer music institutes including the Indiana University String Academy, Calgary Music Bridge, Peter the Great Music Festival (Groningen, Holland), Aria International Summer Academy (Massachusetts), Innsbruck Summer Music Academy (Missouri), Chautauqua Institution (New York), the Idyllwild Summer Program (California), Heifetz International Music Institute (Virginia), Marrowstone Music Festival (Washington), and the Encore School for Strings (Ohio).

A frequent competition judge, Aaron has recently served at the Amsterdam Cello Biennale Competition, Beijing International Competition, Cassado (Japan), ISANG YUN Competition (Korea), Klein Competition, Paulo Cello Competition (Finland), Schadt String Competition and the Stulberg Competition.

His former students have occupied positions in major orchestras such as Chicago, St. Louis, Seattle, Dallas, Portland, St. Paul, Pittsburg, San Francisco, Utah, and the Metropolitan Opera–to name a few. His students also participate in many award-winning ensembles, such as the Biava, Fry Street, American, Penderecki, Linden, Escher, Telegraph and Aeolus string quartets. 

For enjoyment and enrichment, Aaron studies and plays the viola da gamba and baroque cello.

For information about admissions and studying strings at SFCM, please visit our website.