Meet new faculty member J.D. Shaw

Name: J.D. Shaw

Current position: Associate professor of horn in the School of Music

Degrees: Master of Music, Eastman School of Music; Bachelor of Music, Wichita State University

Hometown: Hutchinson, Kan. 

Where are you from originally?

A little bit of everywhere. My dad was in the Navy and we moved around a lot. The longest I ever lived anywhere was in Boston, so I do consider that to be home somewhat. However, I graduated high school in Kansas and completed my undergraduate study at Wichita State University. Kansas holds a special place in my heart as well.

What’s your area of study or research?

I teach French horn in the School of Music and am an active performer. Most weekends, I am traveling around nationally and internationally, presenting recitals and master classes.

Why did you choose Carolina?

The School of Music most definitely has an upward trajectory in our field. A clear vision of growth and excellence along with an internationally recognized faculty was a huge motivation in accepting this position.

What are you most looking forward to this year?

Collaborating with new colleagues and students. Also, learning about established traditions while moving things forward to a promising future.

What are you most looking forward to about being in South Carolina?

This state has some extremely talented musicians in the secondary school system to provide an excellent pool of potential recruits.

How did you become interested in your work?

Interested? How about “obsessed”? I honestly can’t see myself doing anything else. Growing up, I could think about nothing except for music.

What made you decide to go into academia?

For many years, I was a touring musician, performing over 200 concerts a year. Doing the “what” of music eventually led to an interest in the “why” and “how” of music. The university atmosphere allows me the opportunity to impart that knowledge to the next generation of performers and music educators.

What’s a talent you have or something that you’ve done that people might find surprising?

Some people may not know that I am a staff arranger for the Carolina Marching Band. I love writing music to entertain the large SEC audiences, and the kids in the Carolina Band work harder than just about anyone on campus. Whether the team is winning or losing, those kids are leading the fans in positivity and spirit.

What do you hope to accomplish over the next five years?

I would like for the French horn studio to become a national and international destination of study. The traditions are already in place for a bright future.

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