Violist William Johnston joins the faculty of the University of Florida School of Music for the fall semester, 2018. Praised for his "richly lyrical tone and expressive playing" (ArtsATL.com), recent performance highlights include his solo debut with the San Jose Chamber Orchestra and an appearance at the Primrose International Viola Festival. Dr. Johnston is principal violist of The Atlanta Opera and performs regularly with the viola sections of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Naples Philharmonic, and Sarasota Orchestra. He is a frequent guest on chamber music series around Atlanta, and has appeared at summer festivals including Aspen, Kent/Blossom, and Sarasota, and as principal violist of the Utah Festival Opera.
A devoted teacher, Dr. Johnston has presented masterclasses at the Primrose International Viola Festival and numerous colleges and universities. He maintains a private studio in Atlanta, where his students have been accepted as performance majors at institutions such as the Peabody Institute and Indiana University. He is the Program Coordinator and a faculty member of Franklin Pond Chamber Music, a year-round chamber music program for talented Atlanta string students. Dr. Johnston is also a Licensed Andover Educator and offers lessons and workshops in Body Mapping, a method of preventing injury and enhancing performance by providing accurate information about the body in movement.
Dr. Johnston is a native of Sarasota, Florida. Beginning music lessons with the piano at age four, he later studied the viola with Dorothy Stahler, Alison Heydt, Victoria Chiang, James Dunham, and Robert Vernon. He received licensure training in Body Mapping from Jennifer Johnson, and studied Suzuki pedagogy with Kimberly Meier-Sims. Dr. Johnston is a graduate of the Peabody Institute and Rice University, and is the first violist to earn the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music.