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Sean Claire

Since 1990 Sean Claire has been a core member of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and Knoxville Chamber Orchestra.  During his tenure he has served as Acting Associate Concertmaster, which included an extended period as Concertmaster, and has twice held the position of Acting Principal Second Violin and member of the KSO Principal Quartet.  He also holds the distinction of being the only solo performer in the KSO’s Music and Wellness program, a groundbreaking initiative that brings music into health care facilities in highly personal settings.  In addition to his performing duties in Knoxville, Mr. Claire has recently accepted the position of Concertmaster of the Symphony of the Mountains in Kingsport,Tennessee. Other orchestral credits include the Nashville Chamber Orchestra in Tennessee, the Bryan Symphony Orchestra in Cookeville, Tennessee, the Syracuse Symphony in New York and the Asheville Symphony in North Carolina, among others.  

Claire has performed in numerous solo and chamber music recitals in the East Tennessee area, including solo appearances with the Knoxville Chamber Orchestra and Town Concerts Chamber Orchestra in Bristol and Kingsport.  For several years Claire performed with the Bear Valley Music Festival as Associate Concertmaster and chamber musician.  For the last eight years Claire has performed with the Crested Butte Music Festival, and is one of the founding members of the Sally Minor String Quartet, which formed as a result of collaborations at the Festival.     

Born in California, Mr. Claire began his training at age 11 with Barbara Horning and Margarito Ramirez. He made his first solo appearance with the North Coast Symphony at age 15 and at age 16 was admitted to San Diego State University with a full scholarship to study with Professor Michael Tseitlin. During the next three years, he won high placements in several competitions including the La Jolla Young Artists Competition, which included a solo appearance with the La Jolla Civic Orchestra, and the Musical Merit Competition of Greater San Diego, which included a fellowship to the Aspen Music Festival in Colorado.  He then continued his studies at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California with renowned Professor Zvi Zeitlin. 

Claire enjoys living in Knoxville with his wife Stacy and their three cats.  He takes advantage of the close proximity to the Smoky Mountains and theTennessee River for such activities as hiking and water skiing. Claire is also an avid downhill skier, mountain and road biker, and competitive fencer.