Karen Stiles, co-founder and Treasurer of the San Antonio Philharmonic, joined the San Antonio Symphony as Assistant Principal Second Violin in 1991. She has been a violinist with the Austin Symphony since 1997 and performs regularly with Austin Lyric Opera. Prior to moving to Texas, Karen was Principal Second Violin of the Knoxville Symphony and toured Europe and Scandinavia extensively with the 11-member New American Chamber Orchestra. Karen is co-founder of the Pearl Trio and the Sierra Grande String Quartet. She has performed chamber music with numerous ensembles and can be heard on the Camerata San Antonio CD “Salon Buenos Aires: Music of Miguel Del Aguila,” which was nominated for a Latin Grammy Award in 2010.
Karen holds a Master of Music degree in Violin Performance from New England Conservatory and a Bachelor of Music degree from Oberlin Conservatory. In addition to chamber music and orchestral performance, Karen has appeared as soloist with the San Antonio Symphony, the Laredo Philharmonic and the Knoxville Symphony. She enjoys teaching and coaching musicians of all ages, both privately and for youth programs such as Youth Orchestras of San Antonio and Cactus Pear Music Festival. In her spare time Karen loves to read, cook, and is passionate about Pilates.