Bassist George Speed enjoys a career that combines teaching with solo, chamber, and orchestral performing. He is Associate Professor of Double Bass at Oklahoma State University and Principal Bass of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic. In 2016, Mr. Speed joined the artist faculty of the Brevard Music Center in Brevard, North Carolina.
Prior to his appointment with the OKC Philharmonic, Mr. Speed held a tenured position with the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra. He has also performed with the Boston Pops, Boston Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Fort Worth Symphony, and Handel and Haydn Society.
Mr. Speed is passionate about both chamber music and solo performance. He plays regularly with the Oklahoma City-based chamber ensemble Brightmusic. In spring 2018, Centaur Records will release Mr. Speed’s recording of his Vivaldi cello sonata 1-6 transcriptions.
A devoted educator, Mr. Speed received the 2009 Wise-Diggs-Berry Award for Teaching Excellence in the Arts at Oklahoma State University. In 2005, he was a co-founder of the Oklahoma Bass Bash, a summer clinic for Oklahoma pre-college bassists. The Bass Bash, now in its thirteenth year, is a thriving collaborative effort between OSU and the University of Oklahoma.
A native of Spartanburg, South Carolina, Mr. Speed earned his Bachelor of Music degree, summa cum laude, from Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music, and his Master of Music degree from Boston University. Additional studies include two summers at both the Aspen Music Festival and the Tanglewood Music Center. His principal teachers have been Edwin Barker, Edgar Meyer, and Bill Scott.