Justin Hansen is a native of Southern Utah and has lived in Seattle for 8 years. He has a Bachelor’s in Piano Performance from Dixie State University and a Master’s in Music Composition for Film, TV, and Video Games from Seattle Film Institute. He has performed piano locally and internationally with orchestras and choirs and in solo recitals. With years of experience directing and accompanying, collaboration is his favorite form of performance.

Q: Tell us about your relationship with Ancora.

A: I first came on board with Ancora five years ago, during Tess Orozco’s final season as director for the choir. During that time, it was a great pleasure to get to know the members of the choir and board, and I am looking forward to another great year!

Q: Where are you from, and why do you choose to live in Seattle?

A: I hail from sunny St. George, Utah—down in the southwest corner near Zion National Park—and lived there for 21 years. I moved to Seattle for grad school and, upon completion of my Master’s, decided to stay in Seattle to pursue teaching and freelance composition.

Q: How did you get interested in music?

A: I had a neighbor friend that had a piano and watched her play almost every day. After finally talking my parents into renting a piano for me at age 13, at first I played by ear (movie music mainly), and in a short time I taught myself to read music. I found a teacher at 14 and performed in recitals ever since.

Q: What are some of your proudest accomplishments?

A: Earlier in my college career, I had the honor of winning a concerto competition and learning Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto in a month and performing it with the Southwest Symphony Orchestra in Nagoya, Japan. Also in college, I was asked to co-write an original musical that was performed during my senior year.

Q: Why are you excited about working with Ancora again?

A: I have missed collaborating greatly and miss the talent and spirit of this group. I’m excited to see how they’ve grown and to get to know the new members; I’m also excited about a fresh start with a new director!