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Nicholas Ritter

Nicholas Ritter

On Stage

Virginia native Nick Ritter joined the Charlotte Symphony as a section bassoonist and contrabassoonist during the 2022-2023 season. He is also the contrabassoonist in the Richmond Symphony, and was formerly the contrabassoonist in Orchestra Iowa. Prior to his appointment in Charlotte, Nick travelled across the country as a freelancer, performing with orchestras including the Chicago Symphony, National Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Lyric Opera, and Grand Rapids Symphony. 
A passionate music educator, Nick has held teaching positions at Northwestern University, Northern Illinois University, and The People’s School of Music in Chicago. Outside of rehearsals he is most often making bassoon reeds for his business, Ritter Reeds, or off hiking on all the great trails around Charlotte.
Nick attended Northwestern University and DePaul University, earning degrees in Bassoon Performance and Music Theory. He studied primarily with Chris Millard, Lewis Kirk, David McGill, Bill Buchman, and Miles Maner, in addition to Nancy Goeres and Per Hannevold at the Aspen Music Festival.  

Off Stage

Where did you grow up? Hometown?
I am from Vienna, Virginia, close to Washington D.C. I was so lucky to grow up near so many great orchestras and musical opportunities.

What do you like to do outside of work? Do you have any favorite hobbies?
Away from work I love to explore new places. I spend as much time as I can out hiking in the mountains, and try to go backpacking for a few weeks each year. I am really looking forward to continuing my section hikes of the Appalachian Trail now that I’m back on the East Coast.

If you could meet one composer, who would it be and what would you ask them?
If I could meet any composer, it would probably be Jean Sibelius. He was a nature lover yet led a tumultuous life, and much of that is reflected in his lush impressionistic style. I would love to ask him about how he drew his inspirations from the world around him and learned how to shape them into his music. 

What would you do if you weren’t a professional musician?
If I weren’t a professional musician, I would probably be a librarian. I worked in a library handling old and rare materials for a few summers, and it was really interesting!

What are you most looking forward to about being part of the Charlotte Symphony?
I am most looking forward to making music with all of my wonderful colleagues! There is so much great repertoire programmed in the upcoming season, and I have the best seat to listen and enjoy during the concert!