Bryony Stroud-Watson—Viola, Violin
Violinist Bryony Stroud-Watson is a teaching artist whose performances and teaching style are known for their engagement, creativity, and warmth. Stroud-Watson was born in England and began studying the violin at age 5. Her happiest early memories of playing are learning with her mother the Suzuki repertoire and participating in group violin classes. That love of playing with others led her to join the youth orchestra upon moving to Chattanooga. The conductor of the CSOYO called her mother after the audition and said, she plays beautifully but she can’t read a note! After a few months of extra lessons on reading music, she was hooked on ensemble playing and continued violin studies with teachers Mark Reneau and Dr. Anne Rylands. She received a scholarship to attend the North Carolina School of the Arts to study with Elaine Richey and went on to be a scholarship student at the Hartt School of Music under the mentorship of Mitchel Stern and Philip Setzer for her B.A. While attending the Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival, Stroud-Watson met Laurie Smukler and earned her M.A. and artists diploma from the Purchase Conservatory of Music. A passionate chamber musician, while in New York, Stroud-Watson founded the Artemis Chamber Ensemble, a conductorless ensemble that performed in Westchester and New York City. Many concert programs, memorable tours across the U.S., and historic recordings are with the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra. Currently she performs with the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera and practices and studies both yoga, ayurveda (sister science to yoga), and music at her home studio. She teaches at Cadek Conservatory of Music at GPS, the St. Nicholas School, and the Baylor School. She and her husband also host wellness workshops, performances, masterclasses, Suzuki group classes, and creative gatherings at Southside Studio. She brings more than 25 years of varied performance experience and 15 years of teaching experience to her work in Chattanooga. Stroud-Watson has enjoyed reconnecting with the CSOYO and was the Chamber Music Coordinator for the CSO Youth Orchestra and helped to launch the innovative String Theory Internship. Her heart work is in collaborations and, since 2016, she has been artistic director of Contemporary, Collaborative, Community Musical Arts Project (CoMAP). She is a regular musician volunteer at Erlanger and an adventurous home cook and enjoys being an urban gardener and entertaining their two cats, Koi and Spot.