Faculty - Yutaka Kono

Yutaka Kono

Yutaka Kono, Associate Professor
Orchestra, music technology, conducting

  • D.M.A. (Performance - Tuba), University of Texas
  • M.M.(Performance - Tuba), University of Minnesota
  • B.Mus. (Performance - Tuba), Bowling Green State University
Contact information
Email: Yutaka Kono
S17 Office Hours
Music Building A314 | MWF 2-3

Dr. Yutaka Kono recently became the Artistic Director of the Burlington Chamber Orchestra. He is also the conductor of Vermont Youth Philharmonia of Vermont Youth Orchestra Association, and is the Director of Orchestra/Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Vermont. He was born in Tokyo, Japan and began studying piano at age of 7. He began playing the tuba in middle school, and continued when he came to the US as an exchange student. He received a Bachelor of Music magna cum laude from Bowling Green State University in Ohio and a Master of Music from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. Then, he became the first person ever to receive a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Tuba performance from The University of Texas at Austin. While pursuing the tuba degrees, Dr. Kono also studied piano, composition, and conducting. He was the Assistant Conductor of the Kingsville Symphony Orchestra (TX) where he conducted the season opening concerts from 2007-2011. Dr. Kono previously taught at Texas A&M University-Kingsville, The University of Texas at San Antonio, and the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, Texas. He has studied conducting with Jerry Junkin, Mark Kelly, Eugene Dowdy, Peter Bay, and Silas Huff. Dr. Kono was selected to attend the Summer Conductors Institute at the Eastman School of Music where he studied with Maestro Neil Varon and conducted the Rochester Philharmonic. He was placed as a finalist for The American Prize for orchestral conducting at the college/university level, and earned Bronze Medal of the Global Music award for his composition "Mamma at the Gate" in summer 2014. He studied composition with Alex Lubet, Stephan Paulus, and Grantham.

Dr. Kono is a highly active performer on tuba. As a soloist, he is the winner of the concerto competition held at the University of Minnesota and performed with several orchestras and bands in Vermont, Ohio, Minnesota, Texas, and Tokyo. As a chamber musician, he performed with the Austin Symphony Brass Quintet, Austin City Brass, Austin Brass Ensemble, and a jazz ensemble: Tina Marsh's Creative Opportunity Orchestra. He was the principal tubist of the Victoria Symphony Orchestra (TX), and his orchestral credits include the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, Corpus Christi Symphony Orchestra, Kingsville Symphony Orchestra (TX), San Antonio Symphony Orchestra, Austin Symphony Orchestra, New Texas Music Festival Orchestra, Bowling Green Symphony Orchestra, Perrysburg Symphony Orchestra and many others. His diverse interest has led him to perform with non-classical ensembles ranging from Jazz, Dixieland to Rock and Klezmer. He studied the tuba primary with Ivan Hammond, Ross Tolbert, Steven Bryant and Robert Lindahl, and has also done additional studies with Daniel Perantoni, Harvey Phillips, Little, David Zerkel, David Saygers, Paul Hunt, and Eichi Inagawa. Yutaka has attended Keystone Brass Institute and Harmony Ridge Brass Center, where he worked with Warren Deck. He completed a solo tour of Japan in summer 2011 which included a solo performance with Musashino Chamber Ensemble.

Internationally recognized as a pedagogue on low brass and a strong advocate of music education, Dr. Kono has taught hundreds of students, and provided over 40 clinics. His students have competed regionally, nationally, and internationally, and have shown impressive results.

Dr. Kono's recent conducting highlights include: the World Premiere performance of Flight by Marcus Karl Maroney; the TAMUK Faculty Chamber Ensemble on William Walton's Façade and a performance of Vermont Counterpoint with UVM Flute Ensemble at the presence of the composer, Steve Reich. He has also served as guest conductor clinician for the Regional Orchestras in the South Texas and Vermont, and is a sought after conductor for Chamber Ensembles. His book and transcriptions are published from Tuba Euphonium Press, Cimarron Press, and Linus Publications. He is a member of ITEA, Pi Kappa Lambda, the College Music Society, College Orchestra Directors Association, and the Conductors Guild.

Dr. Kono in the news

Faculty Directory

D. Thomas Toner, Department Chair
Paul Asbell, Jazz Guitar
Steve Blair, Jazz Harmony
Joe Capps, Jazz Guitar
Nadine Carpenter, Oboe
Adrian Carr, History
Tom Cleary, Jazz Piano
Sarah Cullins, Voice
Amber deLaurentis Cleary, Jazz Voice
Melissa Dickerson, Voice
Steve Ferraris, Djembe
David Feurzeig, Theory
Anne Janson, Flute
Patricia Julien, Theory, Jazz
Steve Klimowski, Clarinet
Yutaka Kono, Orchestra
Matt LaRocca, Piano, Theory
John Mantegna, Guitar
Brian McCarthy, Saxophone

Andrew Moroz, Jazz Trombone
David Neiweem, Voice, Choirs, Organ
Natalie Neuert, Arts Management
Paul Orgel, Piano
Sylvia Parker, Piano, Theory
Stuart Paton, Taiko Drumming
Suzanne Polk, Cello
Evelyn Read, Violin/Viola
Patricia Riley, Music Ed.
Chris Rivers, Wind Ensemble
John Rivers, Jazz Bass
Lori Salimando-Porter, trombone
Jeff Salisbury, Drums
Wayne Schneider, History
Heidi Soons, Harp
Clyde Stats, History
Alex Stewart, Jazz
Emily Taubl, Cello
Joshua Thompson, Horn
William Tilley, Bass
D. Thomas Toner, Band, Percussion
Ray Vega, Trumpet, Jazz
Jason Whitcomb, Trumpet
Zach Williamson, sound production
Julie Wolfe, bassoon