Joseph Striplin joined the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in September 1972. In 1996, he concluded a tenure as Associate Conductor of the Detroit Symphony Civic Orchestra, the DSO’s pre-professional training orchestra. During that time, he conducted a joint DSO and Detroit Civic Symphony performance for the Educational Concert Series.
Striplin began musical studies in the Detroit Public Schools. A student of former DSO violinist Jack Boesen, Striplin is a graduate of Cass Technical High School and Wayne State University. In 1968, he performed as a soloist with the DSO in a Detroit Discovery concert and served as an extra musician with the Orchestra.
Launching his professional music career as a teacher for three years in the Detroit Public Schools, Striplin became a member of the Metropolitan Opera National Company Orchestra. From there, he performed with the Indianapolis Symphony for one season and spent four seasons with the Saint Louis Symphony before coming to Detroit. Striplin teaches violin privately and also performs recitals and chamber music in the Detroit metropolitan area.
An accomplished conductor, Striplin’s formal study began under the guidance of Valter Poole and continued with private instruction from Gustav Meier of the University of Michigan. Striplin served two seasons as conductor of the Dearborn Youth Symphony. He has also guest conducted for the Lyric Chamber Ensemble and the Wayne State University Summer String Orchestra. In February of 1994, Striplin conducted the Savannah (GA) Symphony during its ninth annual Black Heritage Week, where he was also involved in lectures and discussions. Subsequently, he was invited back as a guest conductor during the Savannah Symphony’s 1997 season. Currently he is serving as Conductor and Music Director of the Southfield Philharmonic and the Grosse Pointe Symphony.
Striplin enjoys reading -- particularly about history and politics -- as well as watching most sports. He lives in Ann Arbor with his wife, Dana, who is an accomplished pianist with whom he performs occasional recitals and chamber music.