Javier Otalora was born and raised in West Palm Beach, Florida, and began playing violin at age six. In 2018, he graduated from Oberlin Conservatory of Music where he studied violin with Gregory Fulkerson and Sibbi Bernhardsson and viola with Kirsten Docter and Peter Slowik. Otalora is also a recent graduate of the University of Michigan where he received his Master of Music in viola performance with Caroline Coade on a full scholarship.
Otalora was an Orchestral Fellow at the Aspen Music Festival in 2019 and has attended summer festivals such as the Meadowmount School, the Red Rocks Chamber Festival, the Dali Chamber Festival and Spoleto Festival USA. Otalora is a passionate orchestra, chamber and contemporary music player. He has performed with musicians and groups such as the Lansing Symphony, the Aspen Conducting Orchestra, the Spoleto Festival Orchestra, members of the International Contemporary Ensemble, the University of Michigan’s Contemporary Directions Ensemble and Sibbi Bernhardsson from the Pacifica Quartet.
Otalora is also involved in music education, having taught violin and viola in Panama for two consecutive years through Oberlin’s “Panama Project.” In addition, he has taught violin, viola and chamber music at the Oberlin Community Music School and was also a strings teacher at Mitchell Elementary School in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
In 2017, Otalora received the Martin L. King Career Grant which allowed him to return to Panama that summer and run his own chamber camp at the University of Panama. In his free time, Otalora enjoys eating pizza with friends, reading about airplanes, and fixing computers and printers.
You can enjoy Javier perfoming on the Music Hall stage at the following concerts:
October 19 - Aoife O'Donovan
January 26 - Young People's Concert: Prima La Musica
February 12-13 - Tango & City Noir
March 18-20 - Respect: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin
April 8-9 - Bronfman & La Mer
April 20 - CSO Proof: Black Being
April 22 - Classical Roots
April 29 - May 1 - JMR's Greatest Hits
May 14-15 - Transcendent Bruckner