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Recognized by the American Viola Society as an Emerging Artist and Teacher, Dr. Ruben Balboa is a distinguished educator, conductor, clinician, and performer. Currently, he holds the position of Assistant Professor at Southwestern University, where he teaches viola and violin and conducts the university orchestra. He has taught viola at both the University of Texas at Austin and Illinois State University, and has also served as the Assistant Director of the University of Texas at Austin String Project.

Dr. Balboa is a fervent advocate for music education, having presented at numerous esteemed conferences including the Best Practices Teaching Sessions hosted by the National String Project Consortium and the ASTA National Conference hosted by the American String Teachers Association. He has also lectured at various universities and educational institutions across the United States. His faculty appointments have included positions at the Austin Chamber Music Center, Austin Soundwaves, Austin Youth Orchestra, Concordia University Texas, Longhorn String Camp, Texas State University, The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, and YOSA Summer Symphony Camp. In 2021, he was honored as a guest conductor for Region 26’s All-Region Orchestra. Most recently, he was invited to conduct a masterclass at the American Viola Society Festival & 47th International Viola Congress in Columbus, Georgia, and served as a judge for the 2024 Primrose International Viola Competition.

Maintaining a diverse private studio, Dr. Balboa instructs violin and viola students ranging from novice to advanced levels, including avocational adults and students with learning challenges. His dedication to music education is particularly evident in his efforts to support young musicians in underserved areas. As a board member of the American Viola Society, he contributes to the Education Committee and the Access, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging Committee.

In addition to his educational endeavors, Dr. Balboa enjoys a multifaceted career as a performer. He has collaborated with renowned ensembles such as The Dallas Opera, Amarillo Symphony, Austin Camerata, Abilene Philharmonic, Austin Opera, Celtic Thunder, Evanescence, Il Divo, Las Colinas Symphony, Lindsey Sterling, Mid-Texas Symphony, and Trans-Siberian Orchestra. In 2017, he was invited to perform at the Festival of the Orchestras hosted by the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, showcasing Astor Piazzolla’s "Le Grand Tango" for viola and string orchestra.

Dr. Balboa's passion for chamber music has led to collaborations with notable artists and festivals, including Anton Nel, the Austin Chamber Music Festival, the "Beerthoven Concert Series," Candlelight Concerts, Sandy Yamamoto, and the Miró Quartet. He was awarded a teaching assistantship at the University of North Texas, performing with the elite graduate ensemble, the Bancroft String Quartet, which were semi-finalists in the 2015 Plowman Chamber Music Competition and Festival. As a founding member of the Favola String Quartet, he won both the Grand Prize and First Place at the 2020 Coltman Chamber Music Competition and has been invited back to adjudicate the competition.

One of Dr. Balboa's greatest joys is performing recitals with his wife, Dr. Samantha Balboa, focusing on works for viola, voice, and piano. This unique ensemble inspired his doctoral research entitled, "Musical Poetry: An Examination of Works and Texts by Charles Martin Loeffler and Paul Verlaine for Viola, Voice, and Piano." Together, they continue to explore new repertoire and commission new works to share with audiences.

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