The Mr. and Mrs. Fitzgerald S. Hudson Chair

A native of South Dakota, Aaron Apaza joined the North Carolina Symphony as Principal Bassoon in 2020. Previously, he held the positions of Principal Bassoon with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra (2013-2020) and Lecturer of Bassoon at the University of Tennessee Knoxville (2016-2020). He has also served as Acting Assistant Principal Bassoon with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and Acting Assistant Principal Bassoon with the Colorado Symphony.

Apaza spent two years at the Interlochen Arts Academy, where he studied with The Cleveland Orchestra’s Assistant Principal Bassoon, Barrick Stees. He received his bachelor’s degree from the Curtis Institute of Music and his master’s degree from Yale University. His teachers include The Philadelphia Orchestra’s retired Principal Bassoon, Bernard Garfield, and Frank Morelli, bassoon soloist, chamber musician, and educator.

After completing his studies at Yale, Apaza was invited to join Miami’s New World Symphony, where he performed under the direction of artistic director Michael Tilson Thomas. He has also performed with The Philadelphia Orchestra and the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Oregon Symphony, and Alabama Symphony Orchestra, among others.