Dr. Justin Benavidez is the Visiting Assistant Professor of Tuba and Euphonium at Texas A&M University-Kingsville, the largest music department in the A&M system. Prior to joining the faculty at TAMUK, he completed his Doctor of Musical Arts degree as a Horace H. Rackham Merit Fellow at the University of Michigan. His previous studies include the completion of a Master of Music in Tuba Performance from the University of Michigan and a Bachelor of Music in Tuba Performance from the University of North Texas. Dr. Benavidez’ principal teachers have been Fritz Kaenzig, Professor of Tuba and Euphonium at the University of Michigan and Principal Tubist with the Grant Park (Chicago) Orchestra; Donald Little, Regents Professor of Tuba at the University of North Texas, Principal Tubist with the Dallas Opera Orchestra, and former Principal Tubist with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra; Everett Gilmore, former Principal Tubist with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra; and Warren Deck, Tuba Artist-Faculty at the Aspen Music Festival and former Principal Tubist with the New York Philharmonic.
Dr. Benavidez has held Principal Tuba positions with the Adrian Symphony Orchestra, the Michigan Philharmonic, the Warren Symphony Orchestra, and the DTE Energy Music Theatre Orchestra. He has also performed as substitute tubist with the Ann Arbor and Dearborn Symphony Orchestras and is a substitute tubist for the 2011-2012 season of the New World Symphony. Dr. Benavidez was also a member of the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra Brass Quintet and a proud participant in the A2SO Youth Education Concert Program, a vehicle that brings the sounds of the orchestra to students in the public schools of southeast Michigan.
As an active solo performer, Dr. Benavidez has been a finalist and prize winner at the Kingsville International Young Performers’ Competition, the International Tuba and Euphonium Conference Solo Artist Competition, the Susan Slaughter International Solo Tuba Artist Competition, and the Leonard Falcone International Tuba and Euphonium Festival Competition. Additionally, he has been honored to receive a Regents Fellowship from the University of North Texas, the Outstanding Student Award presented to a graduating senior from the University of North Texas College of Music, a Graduate Fellowship Award for graduate studies at the University of Michigan, and the prestigious Horace H. Rackham Merit Fellowship for doctoral studies at the University of Michigan. Dr. Benavidez has also been awarded scholarships to attend the 2010 and 2011 Aspen Music Festivals.
Dr. Benavidez can be heard on the album Infusion (Mark Records) performing with the University of North Texas Symphonic Band under the direction of Dennis Fisher, as a tuba soloist on the album Raise the Roof (Equilibrium) performing with the University of Michigan Symphony Band under the direction of Michael Haithcock, and on various recordings with the Aspen Music Festival, most notably with the Aspen Music Festival Orchestra performing Mahler Symphony No. 9 under the direction of Christian Arming, Aspen Concert Orchestra performing Mussorgsky Pictures at an Exhibition under the direction of Tito Munoz, Aspen Chamber Orchestra performing Mendelssohn Midsummer Night's Dream under the direction of Nicholas McGegan, and Aspen Concert Orchestra performing Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet under the direction of Joshua Weilerstein.
Dr. Benavidez is a member of the American Federation of Musicians (AFM Local 625), the College Music Society, the International Tuba Euphonium Association, and the National Association of Latino Arts and Culture.
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