Alexander Hanna was appointed Principal Bass of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra by Riccardo Muti in the spring of 2012. Prior to his Chicago appointment, he served as Principal Bass of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra for four years.
A 2008 graduate from the Curtis Institute of Music, Hanna is widely recognized as one of the finest musicians of his generation. He has performed as soloist, chamber musician, teacher, lecturer and orchestral musician throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.
His passion for chamber music has led to collaborations with Yo-Yo Ma, Mitsuko Uchida and Jeremy Denk among many others. He has performed at several of the world’s finest music festivals including the Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival and the Bellingham Festival of Music, where he was featured as a concerto soloist in the summer of 2015. Additionally, Hanna has performed with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the East Coast Chamber Orchestra.
In the summer of 2012 Hanna was chosen to lead the bass section of the All-Star Orchestra in New York City: an orchestra comprised of the finest musicians from America’s greatest orchestras. The performances were broadcast nationwide on PBS.
In addition to classical music, Hanna is devoted to new music and makes frequent appearances on the Chicago Symphony’s MusicNOW series. He has also performed with New Music Detroit.
A dedicated teacher, Hanna serves on the faculty of DePaul University and coaches the bass section of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. He has taught master classes at many of the world’s finest universities and conservatories including the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music, the Manhattan School of Music, Carnegie Mellon University, Indiana University, the Juilliard School, Duquesne University and the Peabody Conservatory among many others, including several international conventions and symposia. In the summer of 2016 he will coach the National Youth Orchestra and the Pacific Music Festival.
Alex’s primary teachers have included Hal Robinson, Edgar Meyer, Scott Haigh, Kay Moore and Virginia Marks.