Thurston Matthews

A native of Flint, I attended elementary school and college in Flint. I was exposed heavily to classical music at a very young age due to my dad's work as a disk jockey at WKAR radio in Lansing. While I was attending Dye Elementary in Flint, my dad would take me to Flint Symphony Orchestra concerts. I started learning the cello in the 5th grade after moving to Saline Michigan. My first private teacher was Margaret Steel, a member of the Flint Symphony Orchestra cello section. In 1982, I traveled with the Livonia Youth Sympnony to Knoxville Tennessee to perform at the World's Fair with Sesame Street's Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch. By the 8th grade I had landed a professional gig as the assistant principle cellist of the Plymouth Symphony Orchestra where I spent 8 years. During that time I studied under Winifred Mayes, a retired cellist of the Philadelphia Orchestra. I remained active with the Plymouth Symphony after heading to college in Flint at Kettering University in 1985. While at Kettering, I spent my off hours at the Flint Institute of Music where I was coached by the principle cellist of the Flint Symphony Orchestra, John Iatzko. With John Iatzko's help, I successfully auditioned for the Flint Symphony Orchestra in 1988. While performing with the Flint Symphony Orchestra, I completed my degree from Kettering University in 1990. Since then I have received coaching from cellist Richard Piippo