Aaron Goldman is a musician by profession and at heart. A 1995 graduate of NHS, Aaron is the Principal Flute of the National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) in Washington D.C. where he has performed at the White House for President Obama, as well as for the Justices of the Supreme Court, and at many foreign embassies to the US, and US embassies in foreign countries while traveling abroad.
Not surprisingly, Aaron has been honing his craft since he was a youngster growing up in Needham. While at Needham High, he participated in the band, chorus, chorale, and various musicals and looks back at this stage of life as going to school, then home to do some practicing, then dinner, then homework, then more practicing. “My friends got used to waiting for me to finish practicing before we’d go out. On the weekends, I would spend Saturday mornings going into Boston for lessons and chamber music at New England Conservatory. On Sundays I would have youth orchestra rehearsals.”
Aaron always enjoyed music, but never considered it as a possible career path. “NHS offered me great opportunities to explore music and opened doors to additional musical experiences outside of NHS. During my junior year, the band director, Mark Hickey, helped me get into one of top youth orchestras in Boston. By the end of my junior year, I knew I wanted to try for a career in music.” Upon graduating from high school, Aaron earned his Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY.
Aaron has been with the NSO since 2006 and prior to that he was Principal Flute of the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra. He served on the faculty of the University of Maryland School of Music from 2011-2017. Aaron is an active member of the National Flute Association (NFA) and previously served on the board and is currently the Program Chair for the NFA’s upcoming 50th Anniversary. He also conducts DCFlutes, which is an adult flute ensemble he founded 10 years ago.
Aaron’s important message to students is “there is no clear or proven path to ‘success.’ I was a very good flutist in high school, but was in no way the best… By a stroke of what I felt was surely just good fortune, I was accepted into the Eastman School of Music. But even then, a successful career was in no way given. I didn’t always get the most attention nor was I assigned the best parts in orchestra. What I did though, was I kept working and trying new things and pushing myself to be better. I tell my students that I am where I am because I could accept rejection, could learn from it, and have it make me a better player. It’s not because I have any more talent and surely not because I have always been one of the best.”
Aaron lives in Chevy Chase, MD with his husband Lobo and children, Eve, 6 and Elliot, 18 months.