The Rosco String Quartet has a passion for enriching the Salt Lake City community and surrounding areas through exceptional chamber music performance and education. Focusing on their own community more than extensive travels, it is of highest importance to the members of the Rosco String Quartet that they provide quality chamber music for Salt Lake City and Utah. Performing everything from classic masterpieces to lesser-known works and new compositions, the Rosco String Quartet frequently collaborates with and highlights other local musicians and composers of the highest caliber. In addition to public recitals, the Rosco String Quartet offers benefit concerts to assist in raising funds for Utah charities, and educational workshops for middle-school and high-school orchestras. Individual members of the Rosco String Quartet also perform locally with Ballet West, Utah Symphony, Sinfonia Salt Lake, and Utah Chamber Artists, and teach at the Gifted Music School, Brigham Young University School of Music, and the Utah Valley University Department of Music.
Since forming in 2012, the Rosco String Quartet has performed across the United States and established itself as one of the premier string quartets in the state of Utah. They have studied with some of the most prominent chamber musicians in the world including members of the Juilliard, Emerson, Tokyo, Muir, Brentano, and American String Quartets. The Rosco String Quartet received attention on a national level when they were invited to participate in the Juilliard Quartet Seminar and the Robert Mann String Quartet Institute in New York City, and won First Place at both the 2014 MTNA National String Chamber Music Competition in Chicago and the 2014 University of Utah Chamber Music Competition. They were also placed as Finalists in the 2015 American Prize Chamber Music Competition. Drawing attention within Salt Lake City’s musical community, the Rosco String Quartet was invited to be the premier quartet for the University of Utah Chamber Music Workshop and was named the Young Artist Quartet-in-Residence for the 2013-2014 NOVA Chamber Music Series. They premiered new compositions by several Utah-based composers when they were featured in a concert by the Salty Cricket Composer’s Collective and were invited to perform at the 2014 Utah Symphony’s Deer Valley Music Festival in the Emerging Young Artists and Composers program. Other notable performances include the Assembly Hall on Temple Square, Utah Museum of Fine Arts Chamber Music Series, and the “Highway 89” program for Classical 89 radio.
As a founding member of the Rosco String Quartet, Jakob Hofer won the 2014 MTNA National Chamber Music Competition, was placed as a finalist in the American Prize competition, performed at Utah Symphony's Deer Valley Music Festival, and participated in the Robert Mann Quartet Institute and the Juilliard String Quartet Seminar in New York City. Accepted at age 16 to Juilliard’s International Summer Music Academy in Leipzig, Germany, Jakob Hofer has since participated in numerous masterclasses and received instruction from Renaud Capucon, Stephen Clapp, James Stern, Aaron Berofsky, and Charles Castleman. He has been coached by some of the world’s greatest chamber musicians including members of the Juilliard, Emerson, Takacs, Muir, Brentano, and Miro String Quartets. Dr. Hofer has performed as concertmaster of the Utah Philharmonia, Loudoun Symphony, Peabody Concert Orchestra, and as a member of the York Symphony and the Round Top Festival Orchestra. He is currently on faculty at the Gifted Music School and Utah Valley University. Dr. Hofer is trained in baroque performance, orchestral conducting, and often premiers new compositions with the Salty Cricket Composers Collective. Jakob Hofer completed a Bachelor of Music degree in violin performance and a Master of Music degree in violin performance and pedagogy at the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University where he studied with the acclaimed chamber musician, Violaine Melancon. Most recently he completed his dissertation on the Bloch Violin Concerto and received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Utah.
Melissa Combe has recently returned as a founding violinist of the Rosco String Quartet, which was formed at the University of Utah School of Music in 2012 as the Graduate String Quartet. Prior to returning and while living in Virginia, she served as concertmaster of the Bridgewater Chorus Orchestra, and also as a member of the Wayneboro Symphony and Washing and Lee University Orchestra. As a member of the quartet, she has studied under members of the Juilliard, American, and Tokyo String Quartets, in addition to many others. In March 2014, she won first prize with the quartet at the National Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) Chamber Music Competition in Chicago. She holds both Bachelor and Master of Music Degrees in Violin Performance from Brigham Young University and the University of Utah, respectively. She performs on a 1892 Gustave Bernardel violin.
Sunny Johnson began her studies on the viola at age 10 and avidly continued her musical endeavors through high school, including playing as Principal Viola of the Utah All-State Orchestra and as a member of the Orchestra at Temple Square. She went on to graduate from Utah State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Viola Performance, where she studied with Bradley Ottesen and Russell Fallstad of the Fry Street Quartet. While there, she played as Principal Viola in the Utah State University Symphony and received the Hansen Scholarship, the Russell Orchestra String Scholarship, and the New Century Scholarship. Sunny earned her Master’s Degree in Viola Performance from the University of Utah, where she studied with the Utah Symphony’s Assistant Principal Violist, Roberta Zalkind.
Sunny is a founding member of the Rosco String Quartet, with whom she attended the Juilliard Quartet Seminar, the Robert Mann String Quartet Workshop, and the Deer Valley Emerging Quartets and Composers Program, and studied with prestigious musicians such as the Muir Quartet, Joan Tower, Philip Setzer, Robert Mann, Nicholas Mann, Joel Krosnick, and Ronald Copes. The ensemble also won the 2014 National MTNA String Chamber Competition, the 2014 University of Utah Chamber Music Competition, and were finalists in the 2015 American Prize Competition.
Lauren Posey is currently a student of Colin Carr pursuing a doctor of musical arts degree at Stony Brook University and is a recipient of the Staller Scholar Award. Ms. Posey began her music training in Salt Lake City with teachers Carey and Elliott Cheney. In 2012 she won the T. Gordon Parks Memorial Collegiate Concerto Competition and the following year she won the 2013 University of Utah Concerto Competition.
Lauren is a founding member of Trio Mondial, a piano trio formed in 2015 coached by Colin Carr at Stony Brook University. In the past year she was a quarterfinalist in the 2016 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, attended the 2016 Banff Chamber Music Residency, and performed in the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center Masterclass Series for Wu Han. She has also been a founding member of the Rosco String Quartet since 2012, with which she attended the 2013 Juilliard String Quartet Seminar, 2014 Robert Mann String Quartet Institute, and the 2014 Deer Valley Music Festival Emerging String Quartet Program. In 2014, she won the 2014 MTNA National String Chamber Music Competition as well as the 2014 University of Utah Chamber Music Competition.
She graduated in 2011 with her Bachelor of Music degree in Cello Performance from the University of Southern California under the tutelage of Alexander Suleiman, and received a Master of Music degree from the University of Utah in 2014, where she studied with John Eckstein and Elliott Cheney.