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West Jazz String Quartet

In 2011, four friends met at the University of Michigan who would have never thought to share a stage together as one single intimate ensemble. One-violin-and-three-cello quartets simply don't exist. However, they were all enthusiastic and passionate musicians who could not pass up the chance to share with everyone just what strings could do. Encouraged by professors at the music school and by fellow colleagues, West Jazz String Quartet (WJSQ) was born, with a goal to fuse jazz and classical music into one seamless experience through an unusual instrumentation and a tangible love for music through strings.

The primary members consist of Victor Huls, Eric Haugen, and Danny Poceta, but other cellists too were welcomed and equally trusted to carry on the torch. The group has been on hiatus for the time being, but we are always happy to play for an interested audience. 

Please direct inquiries to: westjazzsq@gmail.com

Danny Poceta

Hailing from San Diego, CA, Danny loves minimalist composers like Philip Glass and oldies such as The Talking Heads and Robert Johnson. His hobbies include rock climbing and slacklining -- both activities that he knows worry his mother sick. He studied with Anthony Elliott at the University of Michigan and is currently pursuing a masters in cello performance at Rice University.

Eric Haugen

Eric Haugen from Bemidji, MN is a versatile cellist of many sounds. With experience playing in a long-lasting high school garage band as lead vocals/guitarist, his diverse background comes in handy for many styles of music. A couple favorites of his include singer/songwriters and bands such as Tallest Man on Earth, Art & Garfunkel, and the Beatles. He received his bachelors at the University of Michigan with Richard Aaron. Eric will be pursuing his cello-ridden life path in Colorado starting in the fall.

Victor Huls

Victor is a native of Jacksonville, FL. Born to a violinist father and cellist mother, he received training in all styles of music from a very young age. Starting with influences in folk/bluegrass on multiple instruments as well as classical music, he eventually found love for conducting. Victor is an avid pianist, and is currently pursuing his masters in cello performance with Richard Aaron and conducting with Kenneth Kiesler at the University of Michigan.

Chris Young

Originally from Idaho Falls, ID, Chris went to the University of Miami for his undergraduate, where he had the honor of playing in the Stamps String Quartet, one of the school's distinguished ensembles. He received his masters in cello performance at the University of Michigan with Richard Aaron. Chris loves working outdoors and is a phenomenal chamber musician. He also loves comfortable shoes.

Jacob Wunsch

Jacob Wunsch of Milwaukee, WI follows a stric diet of protein and music. An incredible talent with interests in varying genres, Jacob attended Indiana University for his undergrad, where he studied with Eric Kim. Following his bachelors, he received his masters at the University of Michigan under the tutelage of Richard Aaron. He hobbies include catching rays playing ultimate frisbee, destroying his friends at card games, and suppressing world hunger through cooking.

James Perretta

Computer science whiz and pizzicato cellist/viola da gamba player James Perretta is from St. Louis, MO. He attended the University of Michigan school of music studying with Richard Aaron for several years before adding a computer science degree to his docket, effectively making himself the greatest master at high-regarded skills in the most polarly opposite eras. In addition to computing and musicking, James has luscious hair and he cooks a mean Italian dinner.

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