Principal Tuba, James Irvine Chair
Member since 2002
Hometown: Princeton, IL
On becoming an orchestral musician:
When I started college I was a music education major. Then as a freshman I became more immersed in the orchestral repertory. That’s when I got the bug and decided I wanted to play for a living. I spent thirteen years playing in smaller orchestras before winning the job with the SFS. Since there is only one tuba in an orchestra, the positions are scarce and very competitive. It is a thrill for me to have the opportunity to play with this orchestra.
Mahler and Prokofiev symphonies are some of my favorites to play, especially the Mahler 7 and Prokofiev Fifth, as well as all of Shostakovich’s symphonies. The Franck D minor Symphony is one of my all-time favorites. For pure listening pleasure, Puccini.
On being in the Orchestra:
Day in and day out, one of the most fantastic things about my job is playing with the trombone section. John Engelkes, who sits next to me, and Paul Welcomer, have been a huge influence on me since I got here.
In your CD player:
I’ve always found Glenn Gould fascinating, and I have some of his Bach handy at all times. I love the Chopin Nocturnes with Claudio Arrau. It is beautiful, inspired, and poetic playing. The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Stadium Arcadium is a favorite, and I usually have some U2 or Dave Matthews nearby.