Bart Dunning started the double bass in a school music program in Meadville, Pennsylvania, chosen because he was the tallest boy in the sixth grade. By eighth grade, he was playing in the Allegheny College Symphonetta. He graduated with honors from the Interlochen Arts Academy and continued his education at the University of Michigan, receiving both Bachelor and Master of Music. At Michigan he was awarded the Babcock Award for students showing musical achievement, excellent scholarship and outstanding character. He was also inducted into Pi Kappa Phi and Pi Kappa Lambda honorary fraternities. His principal teachers were Clyde Thompson and Lawrence Hurst with summer study with Roger Scott in Philadelphia.
Bart played in the Colorado Philharmonic, Toledo Opera Orchestra and is currently associate principal bass of the Toledo Symphony. He was a teaching fellow at the University of Michigan, and adjunct instructor of double bass at Eastern Michigan University. In addition to maintaing a private studio, Bart taught as a string specialist in the Wayne Westland Community Schools and currently teaches in the Ann Arbor Public Schools. He is on the faculty of New England Music Camp.
Bartʼs wife, Sally, is also a musician. They have two children who spent many summers at NEMC as campers and staff, as well as two grandsons living in the Boston area.