Dr. Steven Kruse, viola, has a vast array of experience as a soloist, orchestral, and chamber musician. He has performed as principal violist with the Kansas City Symphony, Kansas City Camerata, Lima Symphony, Windsor Symphony, South Bend Symphony and for eleven years with the Flint Symphony. He appeared as soloist with most of the orchestras above, as well as several orchestras throughout the world, including the State Philharmonic of Sibiu (Romania), the Vietnam National Opera and Ballet Orchestra (Hanoi), as well as several orchestras throughout the midwest.

As a chamber musician, Dr. Kruse was a founding member of the Kansas City Chamber Soloists and a member of the Appalachian String Quartet for four years, a resident quartet in West Virginia. He performed for twenty years with the Eastern Chamber Players and as a member of the violin-viola Kruse Duo. He has performed in Germany, Romania, Israel, Italy, Taiwan, and Vietnam, where he appeared as both viola soloist and conductor. Dr. Kruse has presented performance and lecture sessions at annual conventions for the American String Teachers Association, College Music Society, Music Educators National Conference, and International Viola Society Congresses. Last June, he performed at the William Primrose International Viola Competition and Festival, held at the Colburn School of Music in Los Angeles.

Dr. Kruse taught for twelve years at the Conservatory of Music, University of Missouri-Kansas City, serving for four years as Coordinator of Strings. He has also held teaching positions at West Virginia University, Heidelberg University (Tiffin, OH), Bowling Green State University, the University of Toledo, University of Windsor, University of Western Ontario, William Jewell College, and the University of Notre Dame. In addition, Dr. Kruse taught for twenty summers at the Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, North Carolina. He has also taught and performed at the Bay View Music Festival, Colorado Music Festival, Peninsula Music Festival, and Sewanee Summer Music Festival. Dr. Kruse's students have won positions in major and regional orchestras and teach at colleges, universities, and public schools throughout the United States.

Dr. Kruse earned his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the Manhattan School of Music, and a Doctorate from Ball State University. His principal teachers have been Lillian Fuchs, Milton Thomas, Robert Slaughter, and Jerzy Kosmala. He has co-authored articles with his wife, Penny, in the Strad, American String Teacher, and the Journal of the American Viola Society. Dr. Kruse is past treasurer of both the International Viola Society the American Viola Society.

As an educator, Dr. Kruse has taken Suzuki teacher training courses and is an active Suzuki teacher and a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas. He has published several arrangements for mixed-level string groups that allow students of different abilities and age levels to perform together. These arrangements have been performed by student groups in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Missouri and Kansas. He is currently on the faculty of the Toledo School for the Arts and the Toledo Symphony School of Music. He also maintains an active private studio.