J. David Arnott, DMA, a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, the Philadelphia College of Performing Arts, and the University of Southern Mississippi, holds the position of Orchestra Director and Associate Professor of Music at The College of St. Benedict/St. John’s University. Having lived and worked as a professional musician in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Mississippi, and Kansas, Dr. Arnott has extensive experience both playing and conducting. While serving as Assistant Principal Violist of the Mississippi Symphony, he also served as conductor of the Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra. In Philadelphia, he held principal positions in the Pennsylvania Sinfonia Orchestra, the Haddonfield Symphony, the Bridgeton Symphony, and was a member of the South Jersey and Trenton Symphonies. Dr. Arnott has participated in many festivals in both the United States and in Europe including Lutheran Summer Music, The National Repertory Orchestra in Colorado, The Bear Lake Music Festival in Utah, The Evian Music Festival in France and the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival in Germany. He is the violinist of Trio Benedicta and a member of the viola section of the Duluth-Superior Symphony. In 2008 Arnott performed at the International Viola Society Conference at Arizona State University and is a past-president of the Minnesota Viola Society. Arnott has written both the Viola and the School Orchestra News columns for the award-winning journal of the Minnesota chapter of The American String Teachers Association, StringNotes. He is a past president of the Minnesota Viola Society, has hosted the Minnesota Allstate Orchestra Festival from 2008-2017, and was the Allstate Orchestra Viola Coach from 2005-2017. Dr. Arnott has also been the executive director of the Upper Midwest String and Chamber Music Conference since 2008.
Dr. Arnott plays a 1971 Sergio Peresson Viola.
In addition to teaching studio violin and viola and conducting the orchestra, Dr. Arnott has taught First Year Seminar, Ethics Common Seminar, and has led several study abroad semesters in London.