Matthew Dahm, violin, has been performing with the Madison Symphony Orchestra since 2004. This Q&A is part of our Home Is Where the Art Is series of artist stories featuring our musicians.
When did you first start playing your musical instrument?
I started playing violin with the Suzuki program in my home town of Stevens Point, WI, when I was five years old. I also had the privilege of meeting Dr. Suzuki in Stevens Point at the summer institute.
What is special about playing with the Madison Symphony Orchestra, John DeMain, and performing with your colleagues?
There are so many special qualities of playing with the Madison Symphony and John DeMain. For all of us, playing in Overture Hall is of first importance. I remember in 2007 when Pinchas Zuckerman came for a playing and conducting engagement he lingered for nearly an hour, playing violin onstage after our rehearsal. He remarked that the hall is itself an instrument and that Overture Hall is one of the finest he’s ever played in. I think we all appreciate the warmth and clarity of sound in Overture Hall and the opportunities it affords the MSO.
What do your daily or weekly routines look like these days?
I’ve adjusting my violin teaching routine to an online “virtual” lesson platform. It has taken some getting used to, but I think lessons have still been valuable for my students and for myself. Also, like many string players, I’ve used my extra practice time to delve into unaccompanied Bach. Bach’s solo string music is endlessly challenging and inspiring.