Marcus is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Viola Performance at Thorton School of Music at University of Southern California, studying with Karen Dreyfus. Marcus successfully completed his undergraduate degree at The Juilliard School under full tuition scholarship, studying with Heidi Castleman and Steven Tenenbom. Marcus plays on a contemporary viola made by Raymond Schryer, generously donated by the Virtu Foundation.
Marcus has secured principal viola positions of such orchestra as the Sewanee Symphony, Transylvania Symphony Orchestra at Brevard Music Center, Ensemble 212, and Music Academy of the West Festival Orchestra. Other major orchestra appearances include the ASTA National Honor Orchestra, Marshall Symphony Orchestra, Shreveport Music Festival Orchestra, Shreveport Symphony, and Texarkana Symphony. Marcus made his debut at the age of fifteen with the Marshall Symphony. He went on to win top prizes at the First Annual Texarkana Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition, Red River Radio Young Artist Competition, Marjorie Stricklin Emerging Artists Competition, as well as being a featured soloist at the Caddo Magnet High Concerto Concert. Marcus debuted at the age of sixteen with the Texarkana Symphony Orchestra. He has studied privately at various summer music camps with Cynthia Phelps (principal violist of the New York Philharmonic) Donald McInnes, Karen Dreyfus, and famous vioilnist/violist Pinchas Zukerman. He has worked with artists from the New York Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, and the Grammy winning Juilliard and Cleveland String Quartets. He has performed in masterclasses for the Manhattan String Quartet, Cynthia Phelps, Donald McInnes, Susan Debois, Harlem String Quartet, Patricia McCarty, and Joseph Silverstein. In November 2010, Marcus collaborated with the famed pianist Christopher O’Reilly for a taping of NPR’s ‘From The Top,’ with whom he was declared a $10,000 Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award recipient. Other awards include 2nd Prize in the George Gershwin International Competition, a Congressional Black Caucus Spouses Heineken Performing Arts award, and full scholarship fellowship at the prestigious Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, CA.
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My teaching philosophy is solely based upon music being a universal language. My goal is to guide and encourage growth of a student so that his or her talents may progress with proper technical and musical advancements. Each student is unique; therefore, the approach to the student should be unique as well. I take time to understand the student, assess the situation, and execute a personalized lesson plan that will develop their skills.