Eric Halen joined the Houston Symphony as Assistant Concertmaster in 1987.  In 1997, he assumed the position of Associate  Concertmaster and served as Acting Concertmaster for the 2005 -06 season.   He is serving as Acting Concertmaster this season as well. After earning his bachelor’s degree at Central Missouri State University where he studied violin with his father, Dr. Walter Halen, he received his master’s degree at the age of 20 from the University of Illinois, while studying with Sergiu Luca.  At age 23, he became artist-teacher of violin at Texas Christian University.  Mr. Halen has performed in solo and chamber music programs in the U.S. and abroad, including solo appearances with the St. Louis and Houston Symphonies. As a chamber musician, Mr. Halen has collaborated with many pre-eminent artists including violinist Sergiu Luca, cellists Gary Hoffman and Lynn Harrell, and pianists Christoph Eschenbach and John Kimura Parker.  Mr. Halen has made frequent guest appearances with DA CAMERA of Houston, and MUSIC IN CONTEXT.  As a member of the Houston Symphony Chamber Players with Christoph Eschenbach, he has toured the U.S., Japan, and Europe and made recordings for Koch International, including Messiaen’s “Quartet for the end of Time” and Alban Berg’s Adagio for Violin, Clarinet and Piano from the Chamber Concerto.  Recognized by the Houston Chronicle as a Houston favorite, critics have described Mr. Halen’s violin playing as “sterling”, and “tenderly expressive and dramatic”.  A review in the Chicago Sun-Times of the Houston Symphony Chamber Players Ravinia Festival performance of Messiaen’s “Quartet for the End of Time” states,  “…as the final, sustained tone of Eric Halen’s violin faded to close… there was no doubt that the evening had offered the best kind of virtuosity”.  Mr. Halen has performed as soloist many times with the Houston Symphony on Classical Subscription concerts, including a performance of Prokofiev’s Concerto in G minor with Christoph Eschenbach conducting and the Mozart Duet Aria “Non Temer Amato Bene” with soprano Barbara Bonney and Hans Graf conducting at Carnegie Hall. He has also performed as soloist on the “Interact”, “Mozart and More”, and the “Exxon Pops” series.  Mr. Halen teaches orchestral repertoire at the Shepherd School of Music and serves on the faculty at the Aspen Music Festival.  He plays a violin made in 1616 by Antonio and Hieronymus Amati.


Eric Halen 

Photo by Eric Arbitar