TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Joshua Williams, first-place winner of last year’s professional division of the International Horn Competition of America, will be a featured artist at the 50th International Horn Society Summer Symposium in Muncie, Indiana, July 30 through Aug. 5.
Williams, a 26-year-old Tuscaloosa native who’s entering the last year of his doctorate of musical arts program at The University of Alabama, will be one of 10 headline artists featured in the symposium. Charles “Skip” Snead, director and professor in the UA School of Music and Williams’ music mentor since high school, said that’s an honor reserved for only the “very finest and most notable horn” players.
“It is an absolute who’s who of people in the industry,” Snead said. “The equivalent of a professional sports all-star event.
“It is an incredible honor that Joshua was one of the featured artists to be invited to this symposium. This was because of his major win in the International Horn Competition last year, which has catapulted him onto the international scene.”
Each summer, the International Horn Society hosts the symposium for leading horn performers, students, teachers and any horn enthusiast regardless of age or ability level. The symposium is held at a different location each year. This year it will be at Ball State University. About 600 to 800 people are expected to attend.
“I’m really excited for it,” Williams said. “This is something that I’m sure any horn player probably dreams about. I’m really excited for it.”
Williams will perform several times at the symposium, including performing a solo recital, an ensemble recital and as a featured soloist in a world premiere of a piece by the U.S. Army Field Band.
He’ll also be giving lectures and discussions.
“Not only will people be interested in hearing him play, but they want to hear about him and how he approaches playing the horn,” Snead said.
Williams performed in a recital in the Southeast Horn Workshop in February and as a soloist in the Detroit Symphony in March. In addition, he’s been contracted as a solo artist for an upcoming German brand of horn, “Schmiedhauser Orchestral Horns.”
He said he’s finally gotten used to all of the attention.
The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.