About Justin


Hello, I'm Justin! I've been teaching cello lessons to talented young students for nearly a decade and playing for almost 30 years! I started teaching while I was in college and I kept at it all the way through the completion of my doctorate at the University of Georgia. Since 2014, I've been teaching in the Atlanta area, both in my own home at at William Pu Music Academy.

I've performed all over the world in string quartets and as a solo cello player, and I bring my experience as a performer to cello lessons. My students love working hard to improve, week after week, and have achieved some awesome things! You can learn more about me by reading the fancy bio below or visiting my other website!

In my spare time, I enjoy running, DIY projects around the house, and eating and drinking delicious food and wine!


Here's a more formal biography:

Called “astounding” by the Boston Musical Intelligencer and “a rising star” by the Bay Area Reporter, cellist Justin Dougherty has performed across the U.S. and Europe as a chamber musician and solo recitalist. He has collaborated with cellists Yo-Yo Ma and David Russell, pianists Judith Gordon and Tae Kim, and violinists William Pu and Stanley Ritchie, among others.

Since 2010, Mr. Dougherty has commissioned and premiered nearly forty new works, including more than two dozen world premieres, by both emerging and established composers including Emily Cooley, Dominick DiOrio, Salvatore Macchia, and Bruce Trinkley.

Mr. Dougherty is a devoted, sought-after teacher, and maintains a large private studio of young cellists in Atlanta, GA, where he teaches at the prestigious William Pu Music Academy. His students have earned principal chairs in the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra, Emory Youth Symphony, and Georgia Youth Symphony Orchestras. Others have performed with Franklin Pond Chamber Music and have played in the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, Beethoven Chamber Orchestra, Harrisburg Symphony Youth Orchestra, and others. Since 2015, more than 30 students have been accepted to the Georgia All-State Orchestras, five winning first chair.

Mr. Dougherty’s former students have gone on to study at distinguished schools of music such as Oberlin Conservatory, Indiana University, and the University of Michigan. Recently, Mr. Dougherty has been invited to perform, present lectures, and teach masterclasses at the University of South Florida and his alma maters, Boston Conservatory and Penn State University.

Justin Dougherty holds performance degrees from the Pennsylvania State University, University of Georgia, and The Boston Conservatory where he was the assistant to his mentor, the renowned cellist Rhonda Rider.




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