Mr. Thayer is also one of the founding members of the chamber music ensemble, Camera Lucida, which performs throughout the year in the Conrad Prebys Music Center on the UC San Diego campus. Previous positions include assistant concertmaster of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, associate concertmaster of the North Carolina Symphony, and concertmaster of the Canton (OH) Symphony Orchestra. He is a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Eastman School of Music and the Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division. His teachers include William Preucil, Donald Weilerstein, Zvi Zeitlin and Dorothy DeLay.
A native of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, Mr. Thayer began violin lessons with his mother at the age of three. At fourteen, he went to study at the Conservatorio Superior in Cordoba, Spain. He has appeared as soloist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Jupiter Symphony, the North Carolina Symphony, the Canton Symphony Orchestra, the Pierre Monteux School Festival Orchestra, the Spartanburg Philharmonic, the Cleveland Institute of Music Symphony Orchestra, The Music Academy of the West Festival Orchestra, the Williamsport Symphony Orchestra, the Nittany Valley Symphony Orchestra and the Conservatory Orchestra of Cordoba, among others. He attended Keshet Eilon (Israel), Ernen Musikdorf (Switzerland), Music Academy of the West, Aspen, New York String Orchestra Seminar, the Quartet Program, and as the 1992 Pennsylvania Governor Scholar, Interlochen Arts Camp. Other festivals include the Mainly Mozart Festival (San Diego), Festival der Zukunft and the Tibor Varga Festival (Switzerland).
Mr. Thayer’s awards include the Stephen Hahn/Lillybelle Foundation Award in Violin from the Music Academy of the West, the Starling Foundation Award, the George Eastman Scholarship and the Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music. Mr. Thayer was a laureate of the Wieniawski Violin Competition (2001) as well as winner of various competitions, including the Tuesday Musical Club Scholarship Auditions in Akron, OH (2000), the Cleveland Institute of Music Concerto Competition (1999), the Fort Collins Symphony Young Artist Competition (1999), the American String Teacher’s Association Competition in Pennsylvania and Delaware (1997), the Gladys Comstock Summer Scholarship Competition (1993), the Ithaca College Solo Competition and the Phyllis Triolo Competition (1992). Through the generosity of Joan and Irwin Jacobs and the Jacobs’ Family Trust, the “Sir Bagshawe” Stradivarius dated 1708, is on loan to the San Diego Symphony for use by its concertmaster, Jeff Thayer.