John Rommel is Professor of Trumpet at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. Early in his playing career he was a member of the Nashville Symphony and principal trumpet of the Louisville Orchestra, and recently he has performed with both the Cleveland Orchestra and the Cincinnati Symphony. He is also known as one of the premier teachers in the U.S., and it was a pleasure to speak with him in depth about his philosophy on teaching.
We begin our conversation with my asking John to talk about how both students and also his teaching have changed over the 30 years he has been at the Jacobs School of Music. Drawing on a wide variety of influences, from his lessons with Bill Adam to an interview with Hall of Fame football player Walter Peyton to John Wooden and his Pyramid of Success, John discusses the problems facing music students in universities today, and how a student can strive to move forward in spite of difficulties and struggles.