Baroque On BeaverClassical Music on Island Time


Joe Radtke

Joe Radtke (2012)

Principal Trombone

What are your most important educational and musical moments?
I started taking private lessons when I was in high school and that was the educational turning point for me. I love getting symphony gigs and really enjoy playing in the Saginaw Eddy Concert Band. I have a standing commitment conducting eight concerts during the summer and have always negotiated getting the Baroque on Beaver week off. The Festival is the highlight of my summer and the turning point of my year! It has been fun to watch it grow, and the caliber of the musicians has gotten better and better each year. 

Why did you choose music?
Music was always in my house. My parents love it, and they play the French horn and tuba.

I was lucky to have good teachers and a fabulous high school band director. Playing in my high school jazz band was tops.

Why did you choose your instrument?
My grandpa played the trombone. One time I saw it in the basement, and it looked cool. I actually think it chose me! 

What are you currently doing?
I teach and am the band director in the Greenville, MI, middle school and conduct the high school jazz band. I also enjoy doing lots of freelance gigs. 

Tell us about your family.
My wife, Jennifer, is the production manager at the high school. Given our professions, we have a crazy weird schedule, but we make it work. My older son, Jacob, plays the saxophone and my younger son, Jacob, plays the trombone, and he also sings bass in the high school choir. My parents are major supporters of our artistic endeavors. 

Any non-musical interests or hobbies?
I write music, love being outdoors, enjoy playing video games and read a lot. Actually music, in some fashion, consumes most of my time.

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