6. New England Conservatory – Boston, MA
Notable Faculty: Richard “Gus” Sebring, James Somerville
James Somerville is the principal horn player of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, a position he has held since 1998. Since then, he has also been on the faculty of the New England Conservatory. Gus Sebring is a noted teacher whose recent students have gone onto major positions in the Boston Symphony as well as the Buffalo Phil and the Calgary Symphonies. An excellent all-around school, NEC is noted for having some of the strongest students in the strings, piano, and brass disciplines.
5. Curtis Institute of Music
Notable Faculty: Jennifer Montone
Principal french hornist of the Philadelphia Orchestra, Jennifer Montone holds a dual faculty appointment at two of the top colleges for french horn performance in the country, the Curtis Institute of Music and the Juilliard School. Montone regularly yields students of incredibly high quality; she is widely regarded as one of the top horn professors in the country. She is an active soloist and pedagogue, teaching not just at Curtis and Juilliard, but also at Temple University.
4. Northwestern University – Evanston, IL
Notable Faculty Members: Gail Williams
One of the most active french horn soloists of all time, Gail Williams is a world-renowned horn player who was not only an associate principal with the Chicago Symphony for 14 years, but has also been consistently in the spotlight as a soloist with several dozen orchestras. An experienced teacher, Gail Williams has taught classes at a number of the top music schools throughout the country, including Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, and Rice. Past students of hers perform in a number of top orchestras throughout the country, including the Nashville Symphony and the St. Louis Symphony. Her studio typically accepts the most accomplished french horn players in the nation.
Northwestern, additionally, has one of the top academic programs in the country; french hornists seeking an education outside of just their instrument could benefit from the well-rounded atmosphere of this school.
Listen to the Faculty: Check out Gail Williams performing modern music on this fantastic collection.