Music Director Steve Lipsitt
Steven Lipsitt is in his twelfth season as Music Director of the Boston Classical Orchestra. The Boston Globe has observed: “The concerts have a distinct profile, Lipsitt’s and no one else’s. He has a knack.”
First Prize Laureate of the inaugural Dimitris Mitropoulos International Conducting Competition in November 1996, Steven Lipsitt made his Russian debut with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic in 1997, and is a frequent guest conductor of orchestras in the United States and abroad, including the Athens Camerata, the West Czech Symphonic Orchestra, the State Symphony Orchestra of São Paulo (Brasil), the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra (Canada), the St. Petersburg Camerata of the Hermitage Museum, the Chinese National Opera Orchestra, the Colorado Symphony, the North Carolina Symphony, the San Diego Chamber Orchestra, the Spokane Symphony Orchestra, and the Hudson Valley Philharmonic. He has served as cover conductor for the symphony orchestras of St. Louis, Toronto, and Boston. Foreign critics have hailed his “exalted and well-structured performances” (Le Monde de la Musique, Paris) and praised his “technically and expressively balanced interpretations” (Adesmeftos Typos, Athens).
As a conductor of opera, ballet, and music theater, Steven Lipsitt has collaborated with Scottish Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, English National Opera, Boston Ballet, Saint Louis Ballet, the Boston Music Theater Project, the Boston Conservatory Opera Theatre, and Opera at Longy. He has worked with directors Robert Carsen, James Hammerstein, and Gerald Gutierrez, and choreographers Peter Martins and Daniel Pelzig. He conducted twenty performances of Carousel at the Kennedy Center Opera House with Broadway stars Faith Prince and Tom Wopat. His concert performance of scenes from Boris Godunov was called “an astonishingly vivid account” by The Globe’s Richard Buell, who wrote: “Steven Lipsitt’s conducting showed real mastery.” In 1994 his production of Viktor Ullmann’s Der Kaiser von Atlantis was called “compelling” by The New York Times, while The Globe’s Richard Dyer observed: “a razor-sharp intelligence was balanced by a generosity of spirit…Steven Lipsitt conducted with an unusual degree of skill and caring.” Dyer named this production Boston’s “Best Opera of 1994″ (tied with Robert Spano’s Rigoletto at Boston Lyric Opera).
Also dedicated to the training of young musicians, Steven Lipsitt has served on the conducting faculties of the Tanglewood Institute, New England Conservatory, the Hartt School of Music, Boston Conservatory, and Boston University, and has prepared student orchestras for Kurt Masur, Christoph von Dohnányi, Leon Kirchner, Luciano Berio, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Sergiu Comissiona, and Gunther Schuller. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Yale University, where he was the recipient of awards for exceptional promise and excellence in conducting. His principal conducting studies were with Otto-Werner Mueller at Yale, and in master classes with Herbert Blomstedt, Helmuth Rilling, Charles Bruck at the Pierre Monteux School, and Gustav Meier at Tanglewood. His earlier training included clarinet studies with Boston Symphony Orchestra member Pasquale Cardillo and Yale’s Keith Wilson, vocal studies with Joan Heller and Phyllis Curtin, and composition studies with Martin Bresnick and Jacob Druckman.
Harry Ellis Dickson, Music Director Laureate
Harry Ellis Dickson was appointed Music Director of the Boston Classical Orchestra in 1983 and Music Director Laureate in 1999. He served as Associate Conductor Laureate of the Boston Pops and the Founder and Conductor Laureate of the Boston Symphony Youth Concerts until his death in March 2003.
A native of Cambridge, Mr. Dickson was a graduate of Somerville High School and the New England Conservatory of Music. He joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra in 1938 under Serge Koussevitsky, was named Assistant Conductor of the Pops in 1958 and Associate Conductor in 1980. He founded the Boston Symphony’s current Youth Concert series in 1959.
The distinguished recipient of numerous awards, Mr. Dickson was honored by the City of Somerville in 1976, when the Harry Ellis Dickson Center of Fine Arts and Humanities was dedicated in its Winter Hill Community School. In 1983, the Boston Public Schools honored him by dedicating the Harry Ellis Dickson Orchestral Suite at Madison Park High School. In 1991, the City of Boston, in collaboration with the Boston Fenway Group and the Boston Redevelopment Authority, dedicated the Harry Ellis Dickson Park on Westland Avenue near Symphony Hall.
An ardent collector of anecdotes about music and musicians, Mr. Dickson incorporated many of them into his books, Gentlemen, More Dolce Please, Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops, and Beating Time.
In March 2003, Harry Ellis Dickson died at the age of 94.
Steven Lipsitt Remembers Harry Ellis Dickson
The Boston Classical Orchestra was privileged to have a special relationship with Harry Ellis Dickson these past twenty years, having benefited from his service as music director from 1983-1999 and as music director laureate subsequently. Although he did not found the orchestra, he did build it: under Harry’s guidance the BCO grew from playing three single programs annually to offering five programs, each played twice; he initiated our youth and outreach programs; he attracted soloists of the highest artistic level; and he established the precedent of offering occasional neo-classical works and lesser-known Classical compositions alongside the most beloved and popular music of Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, and their contemporaries.
Most importantly and characteristically, Harry crafted a model for the BCO’s Faneuil Hall concerts which remains intact today: great music for chamber orchestra, played well by the city’s finest professional freelance musicians, offered honestly and unpretentiously, introduced from the podium with wit and affection.
Harry’s 65-year musical career in Boston certainly brought him before an enormous and diverse public — his work at Symphony Hall especially exposed thousands of concertgoers, young and old, to the palpable joys of live orchestral music. But nobody felt closer to him than his Boston Classical Orchestra audiences at Faneuil Hall: the intimacy of the space, Harry’s energetic presence and winning manner, the experience of hearing a Boston legend doing his best work inside a Boston landmark — these were treasurable events, and they made Harry’s audience feel that they knew him, and he knew them.
We honor Harry every time we play. He is irreplaceable, and we miss him.
Concertmaster Sandra Stecher Kott
Violinist Sandra Stecher Kott was named concertmaster of the Boston Classical Orchestra in 1997. She is an active orchestral and chamber musician performing with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, the Cantata Singers and the Arriaga String Quartet. She is also concertmaster of the Boston Lyric Opera Company and has previously served as concertmaster with the Opera Company of Boston under Sarah Caldwell.
Ms. Kott holds masters degrees in violin and music theory from the New England Conservatory of Music and is an Assistant Professor at the Berklee College of Music and chair of the string faculty at the Rivers Music School in Weston. She can be heard nationwide as the violinist in the theme music for the PBS series Victory Garden.
Pre-concert Lecturer Mary Ann Nichols
Mary Ann’s’ interest in the arts began as a viola player in grade school. She studied theatre and played music through college and graduate school. She began her broadcasting career at classical station WGMS in Washington D.C. in 1981. From 1984-1996, she was announcer and music programmer for Boston’s classical radio station, WCRB. She is currently a broadcaster at WBUR.
MEMBERS OF THE BOSTON CLASSICAL ORCHESTRA
Sandra Stecher Kott, concertmaster
Sandra Stecher Kott was named concertmaster in 1997. She is an active orchestral and chamber musician performing with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, the Cantata Singers and the Arriaga String Quartet. She is also concertmaster of the Boston Lyric Opera Company and previously served as concertmaster with the Opera Company of Boston under the late Sarah Caldwell. Ms. Kott holds masters degrees in violin and music theory from the New England Conservatory of Music and is an Assistant Professor at the Berklee College of Music and a member of the string faculty at the Rivers Music School in Weston.
Roksana Sudol, principal second
Roksana Sudol has been a member of the BCO for more than 20 years. She is a native of Poland who at the age of 12 moved to Guadalajara, Mexico where she became a well known young violin soloist and chamber musician. She came to Boston in1986 to study violin performance with Roman Totenberg after receiving the Dean Scholarship Award at Boston University. As a former member of Concertos Guadalajara String Quartet, Poznan Trio and Trio Dorado, Ms. Sudol participated in many chamber music festivals and performed chamber music recitals in Mexico, New York and Canada. She is an active member of the freelancing community in the Boston area having collaborated with Boston Ballet, Boston Philharmonic, Pro-Arte Chamber Orchestra, New England String Ensemble, Back Bay Chorale, Newburyport Chorale, and Cantata Singers. An accomplished violin teacher, she is a member of the music faculty at Phillips Academy in Andover and also teaches at her private home studio in Andover where she lives with her husband and two daughters.
Stacey Alden has been a member of Boston Classical Orchestra since 1983. A graduate of Boston University’s School for the Arts and a former member of the Virginia Symphony and Virginia Opera, she now performs regularly with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Lyric Opera and the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra. An avid teacher, Ms. Alden has for many years maintained a Violin studio at her home in West Newton. Her favorite leisure time activities include scrabble, jewelry making and gardening
Melanie Auclair-Fortier is a native of Canada who studied at the Conservatoire de musique de Quebec where she obtained her first prize “avec grande distinction” with a minor in chamber music. During her time there she played with the Quebec Symphony Orchestra and other professional ensembles. She won a full scholarship to the New England Conservatory to study with Malcolm Lowe, where she earned a Graduate Diploma in violin performance. Ms. Auclair-Fortier was a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada and the “Jeunesses Musicales” World Orchestra. In addition to playing with ensembles such as Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Opera Boston, Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Classical and others, she has her own private teaching studio in Andover.
Cynthia Cummings is a graduate of the University of Michigan, with a Master of Music degree from the University of Southern California. Her teachers include Burton Kaplan, Paul Makanowitzky, Eudice Shapiro, and Charles Castleman. Formerly, Concertmaster and soloist with the Thayer Symphony Orchestra in South Lancaster, MA, member of the Arriaga String Quartet in the Boston area for 10 years, Associate Concertmaster of the Omaha Symphony, and Tanglewood Fellow for three summers, she now plays for the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Classical Orchestra, and Boston Lyric Opera. In 2000 she participated in the performance and production of a CD of solo piano and chamber works by Teresa Carreno. Ms Cummings plays on a violin made in 1752 by Spanish Luthier Joseph Contreras.
Colin Davis performs with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Classical Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Cantata Singers, Emmanuel Music, Portland Symphony Orchestra and serves as Principal Second Violin in the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Davis has also played in such diverse chamber groups as the Boston Composers String Quartet, the Art of Music Chamber Players, the New England String Ensemble Virtuosi and currently with Decompression Chamber Music. He is a founding member of the Belmont group “Record Players”. Born in England, Mr. Davis earned his performance degree from the Royal College of Music in London. He was a member of the BBC Symphony Orchestra before immigrating to the US in 1989.
Jodi Hagen received an Artist Diploma, Masters Degree, and Bachelor Degree in violin performance at Boston University, where she was a student of Roman Totenberg. She has earned numerous honors for her solo and chamber music performances from such notable institutions as Boston University, the Carmel International Chamber Music Competition, and the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition.
Ms. Hagen enjoys playing solo violin for the PBS television series American Experience. She has appeared in recital at King’s Chapel, MIT, The Nahant Historical Society, Swampscott Unitarian Universalist Church, and Boston University. She is a member of both the Scandia Duo and Trio Nordica, and plays with Boston Lyric Opera, Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, and Chamber Orchestra of Boston. As a member of Emmanuel Music, she has performed at Lincoln Center and throughout Europe. She has recorded for Koch International and Nonesuch.
Rebecca Katsenes has been a member of the Boston Classical Orchestra for more than 10 years. She is also Concertmaster of Boston Virtuosi, plays with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, and is a substitute with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. She has played with the Rhode Island Philharmonic, the Harvard Chamber Orchestra, and for 9 years with the Portland Symphony Orchestra, one of them as Assistant Principal Second violin. Ms. Katsenes has coached orchestral repertoire and chamber music for the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras. Her teachers include Sara M. Scriven, Roger Shermont and Joseph McGauley of the Boston Symphony, and Bernhardt Goldschmidt of the Cleveland Orchestra. Presently she maintains a private teaching studio at her home and in Bedford, MA, and teaches at the Allegro Music School in South Natick.
Michael Korn was born in the Soviet Union and received musical training in violin in Novosibirsk, at the Gnessin Institute in Moscow and at the University of Tel-Aviv where his teachers included Z. Bron, G. Zhislin, and Y. Kless. Since moving to the U.S. in 1997, Mr. Korn has been a member of the Alabama Symphony Orchestra and a founding member of the critically acclaimed Chagall Trio. He was founder and music director of String Summit, the first youth chamber music festival in Alabama.
Mr. Korn has performed as soloist with orchestras and in recitals, and chamber music in the former Soviet Union, Europe, Africa, and the United States. He is music director and conductor of the Waltham Philharmonic Orchestra and the Sharon Chamber Community Orchestra in Massachusetts as well as a faculty-member of the Community Music Center of Boston where he teaches violin, viola and chamber music, and was assistant conductor of the Center’s Chamber Orchestra. In addition, Mr. Korn teaches violin and viola at the Boston Latin School and strings at the Boston Arts Academy Strings Outreach Program.
Sue Rabut studied with Roman Totenberg at Boston University and Sally Thomas of the Juilliard School. A well-known chamber musician, Ms. Rabut began her career as a full time resident and touring member of the Apple Hill Chamber Players. Later she joined the Boston Composers String Quartet which pioneered works by local composers and recorded the first set of Arthur Foote’s String Quartets. She is also an avid opera musician currently serving as assistant concertmaster at Glimmerglass Opera and is a member of Boston Lyric Opera.
Beth Welty has been performing and teaching in the Boston area for many years. She is assistant principal second violin with the Springfield (MA) Symphony Orchestra, and serves as concertmaster of the Nashua Chamber Orchestra, the Waltham Symphony, and the Lowell-based New England Orchestra. She has also played with other regional orchestras in New England including the Portland Symphony and the Rhode Island Philharmonic. She has performed abroad with a number of touring orchestras, playing concerts in Italy, Spain, and South Africa. In addition to her extensive orchestral experience, Beth is an avid chamber musician. In 1991 she made her Lincoln Center debut with the Boston Quartet, of which she was also a founding member. She is currently a member of the Kaleidoscope Chamber Ensemble (www.kaleidoscope chamber.com)
Ms. Welty received Bachelor and Master’s degrees in violin performance from Indiana University, where she was a student of Yuval Yaron.
Lena Wong is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London. She was a member of the Florida Philharmonic and the Honolulu Symphony before moving to Boston. Ms. Wong also performs with Emmanuel Music, Cantata Singers, Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Ballet and the Chamber Orchestra of Boston. On period violin, she performs and records with the Handel & Haydn Society and Boston Baroque.
Kenneth Stalberg, principal
Kenneth Stalberg received a B.M. at Oberlin Conservatory of Music, studying violin with Steven Staryk and Andor Toth, and an M.M. at Boston University, where he studied violin and viola with Joseph Silverstein. He was a fellowship student at the Berkshire Music Festival at Tanglewood, winning the Joseph Silverstein prize in 1974. From 1977 to 1982 he was the violist with the New College String Quartet and principal viola with the Florida West Coast Symphony, both in Sarasota, Florida. Currently, he is principal viola of the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, the Boston Lyric Opera Orchestra, the Boston Landmarks Orchestra, as well as the Boston Classical Orchestra, where he has been heard as a soloist on violin and viola many times. He also performs on violin as a member of the Boston Ballet Orchestra. Mr. Stalberg’s arrangements have been performed by chamber music groups throughout the United States, and he maintains a large private teaching studio.
Donna Jerome graduated from the Juilliard School. She then joined the Portland Symphony Orchestra and moved back to the Boston area where she grew up. Since that time she has been an active free-lance musician playing regularly in the Boston Ballet Orchestra, Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Lyric Opera and Boston Landmarks Orchestra. Ms Jerome is also a realtor at Medfield Properties, LLP with a Graduate Real Estate Institute (GRI) designation. She can be reached at www.donnajerome.com.
Dani Rimoni is a founding member of the Kaleidoscope Chamber Ensemble. He is principal violist of the Nashua Symphony Orchestra (NH), and a member of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra. He also performs with Boston Ballet, the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, and Boston Lyric Opera. Mr. Rimoni graduated from the Rubin Academy of Music, part of Tel Aviv University, with an artist diploma in violin and viola performance. After performing with the Be’er Sheva Sinfonietta for one season, he came to Boston to study at the New England Conservatory with Boston Symphony Orchestra principal violist Burton Fine.
Mr. Rimoni has been on the faculties of the New England Conservatory Preparatory School, the Walnut Hill Preparatory School, and the Brookline Music School. For the last ten years he has taught strings and conducts the string ensemble at the Burncoat Middle and High Schools in Worcester, MA.
Mark Simcox and Michael Curry, co-principals
Mark Simcox is a founding member of the Boston Classical Orchestra and has played every season except 2002-2003 when he filled in as the principal cellist of the Honolulu Symphony in what became a wonderful attack of mental health. As solo cellist of the new music group Alea III, Mark has made 9 tours of Greece performing at contemporary music festivals which take place in ancient Greek theaters. He performs as assistant principal cellist of the Boston Lyric Opera, and has played with the Boston Ballet, the Boston Pops and the Boston Symphony. He lives in the North End where he can see Faneuil Hall from his apartment.
Michael Curry graduated from Harvard and New England Conservatory. His major teachers were David Finckel and Laurence Lesser, and he was awarded two successive fellowships to study at Tanglewood. He performs with various Boston orchestral groups and is frequent solo cellist at the Opera House and recently-shuttered Colonial Theater. Michael has performed chamber and continuo repertoire with Mark Morris Dance Group in Boston and New York. He participated in the staged production of Bach Cantatas (solo/continuo) with the late Lorraine Hunt Lieberson at Lincoln Center, in London, Paris, Amsterdam, and the Vienna and Lucerne Festivals, and is heard in the acclaimed audio recording of that production. In addition, he has premiered dozens of new chamber works as a long-time member of Dinosaur Annex Music Ensemble. He has recorded for Nonesuch, New World, Naxos, Bridge, and other labels.
Joseph Holt, principal
Joseph Holt is a graduate of the New England Conservatory. He is the BCO’s principal double bass, the same position he holds with the Portland Symphony Orchestra and the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Holt is also a member of the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra and plays regularly with the Boston Symphony. His principal teachers were Edwin Barker and Henry Portnoi. He currently teaches at the Boston Conservatory of Music.
Kathleen O’Donnell, principal
Kathleen O’Donnell has been principal flute of the Boston Classical Orchestra since 1987 and has held the same post with the Boston Ballet since 1998. A graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music and Boston University, she joined the Boston Symphony on their European tours in 1991, 1993 and 1998, and their South American tour in 1992. From 1978-81 she lived in Brazil where she was a member of the Orquestra Sinfonica Estadual de Sao Paulo.
Alan Weiss has been a member of the Boston Classical Orchestra since 1987. In 1995 he made his European debut with the Romanian State Radio Orchestra when the Bucharest paper Cortidianul called him “truly a master of the American school of wind playing.” His orchestral experience includes positions with the Mexico City Philharmonic, State Orchestra of Mexico and the Iceland National Symphony. He has performed with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Alea III and the Stockbridge Chamber Concerts and taught at Boston University and the Tanglewood Institute.
He was the principal flutist of the Virginia Symphony and has also held full-time positions with the Iceland National Symphony, Mexico City Philharmonic, and the State Orchestra of Mexico. In 2004, Mr. Weiss was appointed Artist-in Residence for the William S. Haynes Company. He has recorded 3 critically acclaimed solo compact disc recordings as well as 2 DVD’s. His most recent release was on Golden Tone Records. Please visit Alan’s personal web site at www.alanweissflute.com.
Barbara LaFitte, principal
Barbara LaFitte is principal oboe of both the Boston Classical Orchestra and the Boston Ballet orchestra and plays English horn with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, and she is a frequent substitute with the Boston Symphony. An admirer of the music of J.S. Bach, Ms. LaFitte has performed most of his sacred music as a member of Emmanuel Music. She was also a member of the Boston Wind Octet, which the late Harold Wright and his Boston Symphony colleagues, Alfred Genovese, Richard Mackey and Roland Small organized in 1988. She has collaborated with the Vermeer String Quartet and has appeared as soloist with many area orchestras. She performed the Vaughan Williams Concerto with the Rhode Island Philharmonic, where she was principal oboe from 1984-94 and performed the Skalkottas Concertino on the Alea III concert tour of Greece in 1989. In addition she can be heard nationwide as the solo oboe in the theme music for the PBS series Frontline. Ms. LaFitte is an innovative teacher who has been instrumental in creating annual Oboefests at Brown University and at the Great Woods Educational Forum and presently is on the faculty of the Berklee College of Music where she has developed a special program for woodwind doublers.
Kristen Severson has been a member of the Boston Classical Orchestra since 1990 and has actively performed in the Boston area since moving here in 1987. She began her New England career with the Opera Company of Boston under the late Sarah Caldwell and has performed with Opera New England, New Hampshire Symphony, Rhode Island Philharmonic, the Huntington Theatre, Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and Emmanuel Music. She holds bachelor’s degrees from Colorado College and the Manhattan School of Music and earned a Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School. While based in New York she played under James DePriest, Zubin Mehta, Sixten Ehrling and Stanislaw Skrowaczewski and toured to Japan, China and Hong Kong. Her teachers include Joseph Robinson, Thomas Stacy, Larry Thorstenberg and Richard Killmer.
Ian Greitzer, principal
Ian Greitzer is also principal with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, the Rhode Island Philharmonic and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project. He is a member of the Boston Conservatory Chamber Players, Boston Musica Viva, Dinosaur Annex, the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and the Boston Conservatory Faculty Wind Quintet. He is currently on the faculties of the Boston Conservatory and Boston University School of Music.
David Martins is a member of both the Boston Classical Orchestra and the Rhode Island Philharmonic. He performs often with Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and the contemporary chamber ensemble Alea III. He is a founding member of Commonwealth Winds and Harmonie Musik and was formerly conductor of the Metropolitan Wind Symphony. Mr. Martins holds degrees from Eastman School of Music and the University of Massachusetts’ Lowell College of Music where he is presently Professor of Music and conductor of the Wind Ensemble. He also conducts the Boston University Wind Ensemble and the Lowell Summer Concert Band.
Ronald Haroutunian, principal
Ronald Haroutunian attended New England Conservatory and Boston University, studying with Matthew Ruggiero and Sherman Walt. He is
principal bassoon and founding member of the Boston Classical Orchestra. He is currently principal with the Rhode Island Philharmonic, the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra and appears often with the Boston Symphony where he was second bassoon for the BSO’s 1999-2000 season. He has been a soloist with the Boston Pops, Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and Hartford Symphony. He teaches bassoon at Tufts University and Boston University.
Gregory Newton is one of New England’s most active musicians. His credits include the Boston Ballet, Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Musica Viva, New Hampshire Symphony, Portland Symphony, Boston Philharmonic, Boston Modern Orchestra Project as well as the Bolshoi Ballet Orchestra and the Prague Radio Symphony. He is founding member of the North Winds Quintet, the Prometheus Ensemble and the Ensemble Capolavoro. Mr. Newton has been featured soloist with the Harvard Bach Society Orchestra, the Granite State Symphony and the Nashua Symphony. He earned Bachelor of Fine Arts from SUNY at Buffalo and a Master of Music from the New England Conservatory of Music where he studied with Sherman Walt.
Richard Menaul, principal
Richard Menaul enjoys a wide-ranging career as a free lance horn player and teacher in the Boston area. In addition to the Boston Classical Orchestra, he is a member of the Boston Ballet Orchestra, the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Baroque, the Handel & Haydn Society, and has served as Principal horn of the Opera Company of Boston and the Albany Symphony Orchestra. He appears often with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and has also performed with the Syracuse and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestras. Concert tours have taken him world-wide to more than fifteen countries on four continents, and to thirty-eight of the U.S. states. Conductors he has played for include Seiji Ozawa, Bernard Haitink, Andre Previn, Michael Tilson Thomas, Colin Davis, and James Levine. He was born in Chicago and grew up in Poughkeepsie, New York. Mr. Menaul holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Ithaca College and a Masters of Music degree from Northwestern University. His teachers include Dale Clevenger, John Covert, and Joseph Singer. He teaches at Boston University.
Fred Aldrich is a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Richard Mackey. He has also studied with Julie Landsman, James Chambers, Mason Jones and Robert Pierce. Mr. Aldrich is principal horn of the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and has performed with the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, the Philharmonia Hungarica, Boston Ballet, Boston Lyric Opera and the Spoleto Festival. In addition to his performing schedule, Mr. Aldrich serves on the music faculties of Wellesley College, Smith College and Brandeis University. He also is on the Board of Directors of the Boston Musicians’ Association Local 9-535.
Gregory Whitaker, principal
Gregory Whitaker has been a member of the Boston Classical Orchestra since 1990 and was appointed principal in 2005. He has been a regular member of the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra since 1987 and with that group has appeared on television and toured with them throughout the United States and Asia under Keith Lockhart. He is also a regular member of Boston Lyric Opera, Emmanuel Music and the New Hampshire Symphony. He has played with the Boston Symphony, Boston Ballet, Handel and Haydn, National Lyric Opera and the Rhode Island Philharmonic. In 1997 he spent a year performing with the Bergen (Norway) Philharmonic.
Dana Russian is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Colby College and has been performing in Boston since 1979. He is the principal trumpet of the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and a member of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra. He frequently performs with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Lyric Opera, and Boston Ballet, as well as various regional orchestras and choral groups. Mr. Russian is a member of the award winning Beacon Brass Quintet, recipient of the 1983 Concert Artist Guild Award – the first brass group ever to win this prize. Mr. Russian is instructor of trumpet at Brandeis University, Wellesley College and Tufts University, and has a teaching studio at home. He is married to his college sweetheart Christine, and has two children, Katie and Gregory. A car enthusiast, he enjoys getting his hands dirty working on his old BMW.
TIMPANI and PERCUSSION
Dennis Sullivan, principal
Dennis Sullivan is a founding member of the Boston Classical Orchestra. and serves as a BCO Trustee ex-officio as the orchestra liaison to the BCO Board of Trustees.
Since 1975 he has been artist-in-residence, conducting master classes for the Percussive Arts Society. He has performed with the Boston Symphony, Metropolitan Opera, Boston Pops, Boston Ballet, Boston Lyric Opera, and the Handel & Haydn Society, where he has held the Principal Timpani position. He has performed in Broadway musicals, was a founding member of the Berklee African Drum Ensemble, and produced a local series of world music concerts. He has been the musical director for the MIT Players and the Fidelity Follies, and continues to write, arrange and produce music in the classical, world music and jazz idioms.
Dennis Sullivan served on the faculty at Berklee College of Music, and recently developed arts, science and business curricula for the Boston Children’s Museum, Citizen Schools, Inner City Entrepreneurs, Madison Park High and for the Boston Symphony’s Educator Workshop program, which featured his innovative MSTEM program integrating Music, Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education. He earned his Masters of Music degree from the New England Conservatory, where he is active as an Overseer, Alumni Councilor, and Board-Student Mentor, and has been chair of NEC’s Annual Fund. He earned his MBA from Boston University, is a certified network engineer and systems development specialist, and recently continued post-graduate studies at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Besides his professional endeavors, he enjoys spending time with his two sons, outdoor sports, traveling, reading, cooking and gardening.