The former Principal Percussionist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Edward Atkatz has performed with the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, Chicago Chamber Musicians, Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra, Harrisburg Symphony and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He has also participated in the St. Barts Music Festival since 1999. Prior to winning his Chicago Symphony position in 1997, he was a member of the New World Symphony in Florida.
Atkatz began his studies at the age of 10 at the Bloomingdale House of Music in New York City and later attended the Manhattan School of Music Preparatory Division. He holds a bachelor's degree in percussion performance and a music education degree, magna cum laude, from Boston University. Prior to graduate studies at the New England Conservatory of Music, he taught music in elementary schools in Worcester, Massachusetts. While in graduate school, he was invited to participate in the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra for two summers, and in 1996 he was timpanist for Tanglewood's production of Benjamin Britten' Peter Grimes, conducted by Seiji Ozawa. Atkatz earned a professional studies degree at Temple University, where he worked with Alan Abel of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
He enjoys performing various styles of music, is a singer-songwriter, and plays guitar and keyboard for the band NYCO. The band was the subject of a recent New York Times article and its music has been featured in advertising for Volkswagen and JC Penney.
B.M., Boston University
B.M.E., Boston University
M.M., New England Conservatory
Professional Studies, Temple University
My approach to teaching percussion is to help each student realize their artistic potential while keeping a vocational approach to music. My goal is to have my students obtain a career in music, so if a student has the natural ability and the interest to become an orchestral musician, I try to give them the necessary skills to audition for a professional orchestra. I also maintain a flexible approach so that if my students have other musical interests that they wish to pursue, including performing chamber music or becoming a solo performer, I will help them to develop their skills in these areas so that they can be the best performers possible. My intent is to teach in a way that is simple, understandable and goal oriented at all times. By doing this, a student's ability and motivation can allow them to learn the necessary skills to have a rich and productive life in music.