Our Alumni

“Curtis takes great pride in the large number of its students who have achieved world renown. Equally, Curtis is proud of its many students who may not have achieved a similar degree of fame but who, in various roles, have brought music, intelligently understood and discriminatingly presented, to innumerable communities and thereby have helped cheer the heart and raise the spirits of countless people.”

This introduction to Curtis's 50th-anniversary book, Overtones—written in 1974 by M. Todd Cooke, Curtis’s board president at the time—is as true now as it was then.

Curtis alumni, having experienced extraordinary one-on-one training and valuable performance opportunities as students, go on to invent careers with impact around the world and in their communities.

  • Curtis alumni are regularly among the winners of the most prestigious awards and honors in the classical music world, including Pulitzer Prizes, Guggenheim Fellowships, and Avery Fisher Awards.
  • They are in the front rank of soloists and conductors. They are leaders and change agents in their communities.
  • They are members of the world’s leading orchestras, and every major American symphony orchestra has principals who are Curtis alumni.
  • They have sung with the Metropolitan Opera, La Scala, Covent Garden, the Vienna Staatsoper, and the San Francisco Opera, among many others.
  • Each season, leading orchestras, opera houses, and chamber music series around the world feature Curtis alumni as guest artists.

Who They Are: Meet Our Alumni

Jennifer Koh (Violin '02)

Violinist Jennifer Koh explores a broad and eclectic repertoire while promoting diversity and inclusivity in classical  music.

Paul Kowert (Double Bass ’09)

Double bassist Paul Kowert has blazed a unique career path through classical, jazz, bluegrass, and folk forms.

Amanda Majeski (Opera ’09)

Soprano Amanda Majeski makes every experience count.

Alumnus Lambert Orkis and a Piano

Pianist Lambert Orkis strives to transport listeners each time he plays.

Alumna Karina Canellakis

Violin alumna Karina Canellakis has become a compelling, and award-winning, presence on the podium.

Alumnus Paul Jacobs and an Organ

For organ virtuoso Paul Jacobs, advocacy and artistry go hand in hand.



Where They Go

In addition to prominent solo careers, many Curtis alumni have gone on to positions in major orchestras, opera companies, chamber ensembles; hold teaching positions at renowned educational institutions; work with important community outreach organizations; and more. Below, explore a selection of notable organizations that Curtis alumni call home, or view more detailed information on student outcomes.

Chicago Symphony Orchestra 7% Curtis alumni, 4 principal chairs held by alumni
Houston Symphony 8%, 4 principals
Atlanta Symphony Orchestra 10%, 5 principals, music director Robert Spano
Dallas Symphony Orchestra 11%, 5 principals
Seattle Symphony 13%, 4 principals
National Symphony Orchestra 14%, 3 principals
Boston Symphony Orchestra 17%, 4 principals
New York Philharmonic 18%, 4 principals, music director Alan Gilbert
Minnesota Orchestra 19%, 5 principals
Pittsburgh Symphony 19%, 5 principals
Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra 30%, 3 principals
Philadelphia Orchestra

45%, 4 principals