Justin Bruns is the ASO's new Assistant Concertmaster. He was previously assistant concertmaster of the Colorado Symphony in Denver and has also played with, among others, the Houston Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, Beijing Music Festival and Aspen Festival Orchestra. (During the summer, he will continue his work as assistant concertmaster at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in California.) Bruns graduated summa cum laude from the Artists and Scholars Honors Program at the University of Michigan, where he received the Stanley Medal for Scholastic and Musical Achievement.
Thomas Hooten is the new occupant of the Atlanta Symphony's endowed Adams Chair for principal trumpet. Before coming to Georgia, Hooten spent two years as Assistant Principal Trumpeter with the Indianapolis Symphony and four years playing trumpet and cornet with "The President's Own" Marine Band in Washington, D.C. He holds degrees from the University of South Florida and Rice University in Houston.
George Curran, a recent alumnus of the New World Symphony (the renowned post-graduate training orchestra in Miami Beach), has joined the ASO as third trombonist/bass trombonist. He has a master's degree from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and a bachelor's degree from Central Michigan University.
Laura Najarian, the ASO's new second bassoonist, was previously a member of the now-defunct Savannah Symphony and of the Des Moines Metro Opera orchestra. She has also performed with the Houston Grand Opera and the Charleston Symphony, among others, and continues to play with the orchestras of the Tanglewood and Aspen Music Festivals. Her bachelor's degree is from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music; she received her master's from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York.