Violist Erik Binkhuysen of Seattle, Washington, is a junior at the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings, where he studies with Lawrence Dutton and Rebecca Albers. He began playing violin at age six, switching to viola at fourteen. He studied at the Seattle Conservatory of Music and Westside Chamber Music Institute and played in the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra. He won numerous solo and chamber competitions, including the Thorbeck–Max Aronoff Viola Institute Competition Award. He has participated in master classes at the Seattle Conservatory, Meadowmount, and the Marrowstone and Brevard Music Festivals.