Born and raised in Indianapolis, IN, Joshua Thompson began taking piano lessons at the age of 5 from his next-door neighbor. Showing early signs of promise and interest in classical music, Joshua continued his musical studies with Majorie Schweir at the Renaissance Studios. At the age of 10, Joshua added the study of classical trumpet to his musical education performing with the New World Youth Symphony Orchestra as principle trumpet from 1999-2000 and with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra’s “Side-by Side” program. From 2000-2004, Joshua attended DePauw University in Greencastle, IN originally as a trumpet performance major before earning his B.A. in Sociology. After completing his undergraduate studies Joshua continued to play both trumpet and piano privately, but switched his career path to focus on the social needs of the Indianapolis community.
Working with and for those living with severe mental illness, Joshua would later go on to become program director for the Damien Center—Indiana’s largest AIDS service organization. He has worked with Dr. Marlon Bailey of Indiana University on HIV/AIDS research and presented HIV/AIDS research focused on culturally sensitive risk reduction practices for the state of Indiana at the 2009 National AIDS Conference in Washington D.C. In 2010, Joshua combined his passion for advocacy and music education by working closely with cultural arts organizations such as the Arts Council of Indianapolis, Music for All, and Indy Jazz Fest with a focus on making educational resources accessible and ubiquitous throughout the city of Indianapolis.