James Przygocki is Professor of Music and Chair of the String Area at the University of Wyoming. He teaches viola, violin, and music education and pedagogy courses and conducts the UW Chamber Orchestra. In addition, Prof. Przygocki serves as Principal Violist with the Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra, teaches at the String Academy of Wyoming and is Director of the University of Wyoming String Project. In the summer Prof. Przygocki serves on the faculties of the Indiana University Summer String Academy and the Rocky Ridge Music Center in Estes Park, Colorado.
Prof. Przygocki's education includes a Bachelor's degree in Music Education and violin from Western Michigan University and a Masters in Viola Performance from Indiana University. He has studied viola with Mimi Zweig and Jerry Horner, violin with Gerald Fischbach, chamber music with Rostislav Dubinsky and pedagogy with Mimi Zweig. He has also studied chamber music with the Fine Arts Quartet and at the Banff Center for the Arts.
Prof. Przygocki is an active performer as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral player. His experience includes performances in Europe, China, Brazil, Canada and around the U.S. He plays chamber music with the Summit Chamber Players, a faculty ensemble at the University of Wyoming. He has also performed at various festivals including Colorado's Music in the Mountains and the Indiana University Summer Music Festival. Solo appearances included performances with the Goias (Brazil) Philharmonic, the Wyoming Symphony Orchestra, the Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra and the University of Wyoming Symphony and Chamber Orchestras.
He has recorded a CD of music by Louise Talma on the CRI. His recording of Camargo Guarnieri's Viola Sonata is on a CD that accompanies Guarnieri's biography, published by Indiana University Press. He also appears on a recent Summit Chamber Players' CD recording of the music of Felix Draeseke and Arnold Krug entitled Homage to Stelzner on the AK/Coburg label.
As a teacher, Prof. Przygocki's experience is wide and varied. He has worked with students of all ages and levels from graduate level university students to the youngest beginners. In addition to teaching college students, Prof. Przygocki teaches young students through the String Academy of Wyoming, a Suzuki-based program for pre-college students.
Prof. Przygocki's interest in teacher training led to the establishment of the UW String Project in 2000 funded by the American String Teachers Association. He serves as Director of the String Project which employs University of Wyoming music students as teachers under the close supervision of mentor teachers. The String Project provides group and private instruction to students beginning in the third and fourth grade and pedagogical training and experience for their teachers.
Much of Prof. Przygocki's work is inspired by his interest in string pedagogy. He has contributed to the book Teaching Music through Performance and to the journal, American String Teacher. He currently serves as editor of the Violin Forum for that publication. Several of his viola transcriptions have been published by One World Strings. These include the recent publication of Dvorak's Four Romantic Pieces which he arranged and edited. A collection of pedagogical pieces is forthcoming.
Prof. Przygocki is a frequent clinician and guest conductor at numerous schools and festivals. He is the conductor of the High Plains Sinfonia, a youth orchestra for young string players based in Laramie. He has served as Music Director of the Lake Michigan Youth Orchestra and the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra. He has given numerous teacher workshops as well and made presentations for various professional organizations including the American String Teachers Association. In the summer he teaches at Indiana University in the Retreat for Professional Violinists and Violists.
Prof. Przygocki is also an enthusiastic advocate for the viola and for string education. He is currently President of the Rocky Mountain chapter of the American Viola Society and is a founding board member of this organization. He has also held leadership positions with the American String Teachers Association, the Wyoming String Teachers Association, the Music Educators National Conference, Music Teachers National Association and the National String Project Consortium.