John Charles Thomas

Trumpet; Jazz Studies

HCD Music

Hartt Community Division
F 19; F20

John Charles Thomas is a graduate of the world famous Indiana University School of Music and holds a Doctorate from SUNY Stony Brook. His principal teachers include Vince Penzarella, Allan Dean and William Adam. 

His background includes performances in all fields of music, from classical to chamber, commercial to jazz. He is the assistant principal trumpet of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, principal trumpet with the Waterbury and Ridgefield Symphonies (CT) and the Queens Symphony (NYC). He has performed frequently with the New York Philharmonic, various Broadway shows, and appeared with L’Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Trier Bach Soloists, Vienna Symphony, and Bermuda Philharmonic. He has played under many of the great conductors, including Sir Colin Davis, Charles Dutoit, Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti, Krzysztof Penderecki, and Mstislav Rostropovich. For eighteen years he was a member of the Grammy Award winning Chestnut Brass Company. John has performed in the premieres of works in both Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, and appeared on three continents as soloist and chamber musician. 

Some of John’s solo appearances with orchestras have included performances of concertos by Bach, Haydn, Hummel, Shostakovitch and Tomasi. His recordings include Mahler Symphonies with the New York Philharmonic, many works of Handel, Mozart, Bach and Buxtehude, on the natural trumpet, and several film soundtracks. 

All of us can and should make music; those that have the desire will. Everyone is an individual, and we are all unique. Improvement in music is a process that involves practice by the student, with assistance, encouragement and guidance by the teacher. 

My most important goal is to cultivate and encourage curiosity in the student. I sincerely hope that every student I work with will experience the same joy and thrill about music that I do, and that making music will become an integral part of their lives, both now, and in their future. 

I have experience in teaching students of all ages (in both classical and jazz), and central to that has been ensuring that each student has a thorough control of the fundamentals of their instrument. I hope that with my guidance, my students will become equipped with the skills and fundamentals to follow whatever path their music takes them.