John Tanzer, Principal Timpani

John Tanzer

Where did you grow up? Born in New York City; Grew up in Bedford, MA

Where do you currently live? Burlington, MA

What instrument do you play? Principal timpani

Educational background: Bachelor of Music with Distinction in Performance, New England Conservatory; Graduate Studies, New England Conservatory; New England Conservatory Tourjee Alumni Award Winner; New England Conservatory/Toho Gakuen School (Tokyo) exchange program; student of Former Boston Symphony Timpanist, Everett Firth; studies also with Boston Symphony percussionist Will Hudgins and former Boston Pops Esplanade Timpanist Everett Beale; 2-Time Tanglewood Music Center Fellow, Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Germany

How did you get started in music? I got a toy drum for my very first Christmas and I have been playing ever since!

What non-PSO musical activities do you participate in?  Frequent substitute work with the Boston Symphony Orchestra& Boston Pops Orchestra; Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. Work also with Boston Lyric Opera & Springfield Symphony and other organizations around New England both as a timpanist and percussionist. My work with the Boston Symphony includes participation on an award winning recording as well as three international tours to Europe and two within the U.S.

What’s your favorite PSO memory to date? The day I won my job with the PSO.

Any hobbies? Commercial Aviation, flying my flight simulator, hiking, studying the lives and works of the great composers, collecting classical music recordings, die-hard New York Yankees fan! I am an Artist and Educational Endorser for Vic Firth Drumsticks…manufactured in Maine

What is your favorite music? What are you currently listening to? Orchestral Classical & Opera; My most favorite composer is Maurice Ravel. I am an avid collector of recordings…  I have almost every orchestral, operatic, and chamber work you can think of – over 3000 compact discs – all classical!

Who or what has been your greatest influence, musical or otherwise? Former Boston Symphony Timpanist, Everett Firth; My first school band director; Boston Pops recordings with Arthur Fiedler; Of course my entire family!

Do you teach? If so, how can people get in touch with you? Yes- Please email me at johntanzer@verizon.net

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