Erica Shirts, a native of Utah, is thrilled to play with the Fayetteville Symphony for the 2016-17 season. She is also currently an active player in the North Carolina Symphony, Chamber Music of the Triangle, and North Carolina Opera. Erica has performed as Principal Second Violin of the Indiana University orchestras and is a former member of the Lansing Symphony in Michigan. Erica has enjoyed working with conductors such as Grant Llewelyn, David Effron, Cliff Colnot, Carl St. Clair, Andrea Quinn, and Timothy Muffitt. She also regularly plays chamber music on the violin, as well as the viola.
Erica is currently the Director of the Duke University String School, an intensive pre-college music program based in Durham, NC which offers private lessons, chamber music, and ensemble experience from beginning students to accomplished high school musicians planning to pursue a career in music. Previously serving as Violin Director for Kidznotes, an after school music program for social change, Erica taught violin and helped establish the string curriculum for the program. During her graduate studies, Erica received pedagogical training from Mimi Zweig and joined the teaching faculty of the world-renowned String Academy at Indiana University. She is also the founder of StringPedagogyConnect.com, a database of teachers who have received pedagogical training from Mimi Zweig.
After receiving her Bachelors of Music at the University of Michigan, Erica earned a Masters in Music as well as a Performer Diploma from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. She has primarily studied violin with Mimi Zweig, Aaron Berofsky and Gerald Elias, as well as Quartet studies with the Pacifica Quartet and Orchestral studies with Jorja Fleezanis and Steven Shipps.