Thomas Vienna is a horn player from Northbrook, Illinois, working in the greater Chicago area. In addition to playing assistant horn here at the Wisconsin Philharmonic, he plays 2nd natural horn for the Chicago Arts Orchestra and has an active freelance career on both the modern and historical horn. He has held substitute positions for the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and New World Symphony.
Born and raised in Chicago’s Indiana suburbs, Thomas first found his love for music on the piano. Before he was tall enough to see the keys, he reached high and slowly worked out the melody to his parent’s favorite Beatles tune; his parents quickly fostered this talent with lessons. Although piano was a very rewarding intimate musical experience, in 6th grade he was introduced to the horn; Thomas took to the instrument naturally, and it exposed him to the challenges of playing in a section and a wonderful sense of being a part of something grander.
After playing in band and multiple local youth orchestras such as the Northwest Indiana Youth Symphony Orchestra and the Protégé Philharmonic in Chicago, Thomas followed his passion into higher eduction, where he would graduate with degrees in horn performance from Roosevelt University, Indiana University, and Valparaiso University. He has previously studied with David Griffin and Dale Clevenger of the Chicago Symphony, Jon Boen of the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Richard Seraphinoff, Jeff Nelsen, and John Schreckengost. He attended the Brevard Music Center Summer Institute for two years, where he studied with Elizabeth Freimuth of the Cincinnati Symphony.
Thomas is especially pleased that his love of music has taken him various places around the world. Thomas enjoys expanding his horizons by accepting unusual jobs such as playing in a jazz ensemble, or on one occasion filling in for lead “trumpet” in the musical rock ensemble Project Two. Aside from French Horn, Thomas also enjoys entertaining on piano, trying new instruments, running, board games, and composing.