Meet the Musicians

Bassoon, Contra-bassoon

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Juliet Hamak
Bassoon, Contra-bassoon

Joined in 2005
Contributes to community arts: I play bassoon and contrabassoon in numerous other classical music groups and the occasional musical theater production all over the Bay Area.
Why I play with PSO: Peninsula symphony is a great combination of talented and dedicated community musicians, gratifying repertoire, excellent leadership from the podium, world class soloists, and a large audience. All these things combine make Peninsula symphony the most rewarding musical group in the Bay Area.
When not playing in PSO: I am a high school science and engineering teacher.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Stravinsky's Firebird Suite. Actually, it's hard to choose, I always love what we are playing.

Clarinet

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Nicole Galisatus
Clarinet

Joined in 2018
Contributes to community arts: I like to organize chamber music reading sessions with my musical friends from various walks of life.
Why I play with PSO: I used to play with Peninsula Youth Orchestra, so I am eager for more opportunities to perform under the direction of Maestro Klein as well as collaborate with talented musicians in the Bay Area.
When not playing in PSO: I work for an experiential design firm and freelance as a clarinetist.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Prokofiev's 5th Symphony

Clarinet, Bass Clarinet

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Nicholas Cotter
Clarinet, Bass Clarinet

Joined in 2017
Contributes to community arts: I am a member of the Golden Gate Symphony Orchestra and Redwood Symphony. Additionally, I am passionate about teaching and maintain a studio for private woodwind instruction, and also serve as an instrumental music coach at several middle and high schools throughout the Bay Area.
Why I play with PSO: I love having the opportunity to perform major orchestral works with talented musicians, all while contributing to the Bay Area's music community.
When not playing in PSO: Second-year law student at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Edward Elgar, The Music Makers

Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Saxophone

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Ron Miller
Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Saxophone

Joined in 1987
Contributes to community arts: I play with various chamber groups and pit orchestras, and I make school visits and public performances on behalf of the PSO for community enrichment.
Why I play with PSO: I consider it an honor to be able to play such amazing music with such a talented group of musicians!
When not playing in PSO: I am a composer and arranger, and retired Aerospace Engineer.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Everything by Rachmaninoff! Especially Symphonic Dances.

Contrabassoon

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Jonathan Westerling
Contrabassoon

Joined in 2017
Contributes to community arts: I founded and continue to run a small jazz radio station in the North Bay.
Why I play with PSO: Peninsula Symphony has a superb quality of musicianship that makes even the rehearsals exciting to listen to. We're so luck to have access to such wonderful musicians right here in our back yard.
When not playing in PSO: I am a radiofrequency engineer at Google.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Holst, the Planets with the astronomer doing his "play by play". Marvelous!

Double Bass

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Bob Crum
Double Bass

Joined in 2015
Contributes to community arts: I play regularly with one other community orchestra, and join others when an extra bass is needed.
Why I play with PSO: I love to play the string bass, I love classical music-- and playing with the PSO brings both of those together! I've been actively playing in local community orchestras for the past 23 years, and the PSO provides the joys of enjoyable music and an extremely high performance standard.
When not playing in PSO: I'm retired from 42 years in the high technology world, but I'm working part-time for a county-wide nonprofit agency supporting early childhood development.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: It's too difficult to name just one, so I'll name several: Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, Holst's "The Planets" and Howard Hanson Symphony No. 2.
Suesan W. Taylor
Double Bass

Joined in 1983
Contributes to community arts: I play in small groups and in the schools when my work schedule allows.
Why I play with PSO: It gives me a lot of personal pleasure because I'm performing with such a great group of friends and fellow musicians.
When not playing in PSO: I work in the biotech industry.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Shostakovitch 5th Symphony
Xin Min Michael Tong
Double Bass

Joined in 1983
Why I play with PSO: Well organized, excellent Music Director & conductor Mr. Mitchell Klein, Also our bass section team leader Ms. Suesan Taylor, she joined our orchestra 2 months early at 1983
When not playing in PSO: I am retired 2 years ago. I was US Postal Service Information Center Computer Programmer 25 years.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Tchaikovsky Symphony/ Piano Concerto
David Herberg
Double Bass

Joined in 2003
Contributes to community arts: In addition to the choir I direct, I also sing in two other choirs and enjoy conducting musical theater.
Why I play with PSO: I was totally blown away by the first PSO concert I heard, which was Elgar's Enigma Variations. I've now had the opportunity to play it twice since then myself with PSO.
When not playing in PSO: I'm retired from the computer design business. Now I direct a church choir.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: I've always loved musical theater, so the full concert version of South Pacific with this huge orchestra is definitely a high point,
Jeff Wachtel
Double Bass

Joined in 2017
Why I play with PSO: We play beautiful music with great and passionate musicians
When not playing in PSO: Executive Director of Knight Hennessy Scholars Program at Stanford
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Aquilanti Mass

Flute

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Ellen Crawford
Flute

Joined in 1973
Contributes to community arts: I help harmonica players make $$$ by taking lessons in the summertime.
Why I play with PSO: Great musicians, good repertoire, I get to play 1st flute, reasonably close to my home, and enough rehearsals per set for me to be somewhat comfortable during performances.
When not playing in PSO: No day job now, I'm a retired software coder. I maintain/update 2 websites. I'm president of a historical cemetery association in Redwood City. That sounds weird but the stories of the people buried there are actually very cool.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Maybe not my favorite, but the most memorable: Peter and the Wolf, a long time ago, for a kids concert. We had to actually run around the stage to different "stations" to play various parts of the piece to somehow enhance the story (was never really clear on that part..)
Kathryn Barnard
Flute

Joined in 1989
Contributes to community arts: I also play flute with Master Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra.
Why I play with PSO: PSO is a nice group of people that plays great music.
When not playing in PSO: I do legal/management work. I enjoy hiking, water aerobics, bridge and theater.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: My favorite concerts are those when Taylor Eigsti is the soloist.

French Horn

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David Dufour
French Horn

Joined in 2002
Contributes to community arts: I play regularly with the Redwood Symphony and teach horn privately. I also play with other community and youth orchestras on an "as needed" basis, pit orchestras for theater shows and small chamber groups.
Why I play with PSO: I love playing in PSO because of the high quality performances and because of the conductor Mitchell Sardou Klein. Mitch is such a joy to work with! He brings such extensive musical knowledge as well as the ability to bring out the best in the orchestra. It is both a pleasure and an honor to play with PSO and all the talented musicians!
When not playing in PSO: I am a Software Quality Assurance Engineer so basically, I try to break things. :) Outside of my day job and music, I enjoy photography, woodworking and astronomy.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: I love all the big stuff we've done like Holst's The Planets, Hanson Romantic Symphony, Rachmaninoff Symphony No 2, Mahler Symphony No 5.
Brian Holmes
French Horn

Joined in 1983
Contributes to community arts: Active as a composer. The PSO has performed seven of my pieces.
Why I play with PSO: By the way, the correct name for my instrument is horn, not french horn.
When not playing in PSO: Retired from the Physics Department of San Jose State.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Holmes Amherst Requiem
Anna Newman
French Horn

Joined in 1993
Contributes to community arts: I am the former Executive Director of the American Beethoven Society; drop by the Ira Brilliant Center for Beethoven Studies in San Jose and check it out!
When not playing in PSO: I am a documentary photographer and filmmaker.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Anything by Bernstein or Copland.
Randy Nickel
French Horn

Joined in 1980
Contributes to community arts: Various other gigs on horn (and sometimes trumpet) - jazz, rock, gospel.
Why I play with PSO: The PSO provides a wonderful opportunity to perform great works with excellent musicians and outstanding soloists that are passionate about their music
When not playing in PSO: Staff consultant; systems and software
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Too many to say; anything by Stravinsky, Brahms, Dvorak - many many others

Harp

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Celeste Everson Misfeldt
Harp

Joined in 1973
Why I play with PSO: The variety of music I learn and play and the community feel
When not playing in PSO: professional volunteer various places
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Scheherezade

Oboe

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Joel Greene
Oboe

Joined in 1981
Contributes to community arts: I play exclusively for PSO, Lyric Theatre in San Jose and anyone who asks me.
Why I play with PSO: I knew I wasn't going to play professionally. By playing with PSO, I get to play great music just like the pros do and it sounds good, too
When not playing in PSO: I am the accountant at Stanford Law School
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Tchaikovsky's Capriccio Italien. It was the piece that got me into the PSO.

Oboe, English Horn

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Dane Carlson
Oboe, English Horn

Joined in 2005
Contributes to community arts: I play the Dobro with the Mill Creek Ramblers in Fremont and at local bluegrass jam sessions.
Why I play with PSO: I enjoy playing a variety of symphonic music.
When not playing in PSO: I am a technical writer and editor working as a proposal development manager for a consulting firm.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Rimsky-Korsakov Scheherezade

Percussion

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Lydia Derugin
Percussion

Joined in 1998
Contributes to community arts: I also play with Redwood Symphony, and sometimes do duets with friends.
Why I play with PSO: We have great soloists, the music is fun, and it is a good social event.
When not playing in PSO: I'm retired from UCSF where I was a Business Manager, but now I work part-time for a Bankruptcy Attorney.
Matthew Germano
Percussion

Joined in 2014
Contributes to community arts: In addition to playing orchestral percussion and drum kit, I also play Steel Drums and have been a memeber if the SF Panhandlers since 2004.
Why I play with PSO: I play with PSO for the privilege of working with wonderful musicians and playing great repertoire every season.
When not playing in PSO: I teach and play music throughout the Bay Area.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: West Side Story Symphonic Dances

Timpani

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Michael Bresler
Timpani

Joined in 1984
Contributes to community arts: I also play in a symphonic band in the City
Why I play with PSO: Great music, great people, and the opportunity to pound those drums
When not playing in PSO: Emergency Medicine - Mills-Peninsula and professing at Stanford
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Anything with a good timpani part - Mahler, Beethoven, Prokofiev, (and the Hanson because of its - and my - long association with Interlochen)
Matt Springer
Timpani

Joined in 1999
Contributes to community arts: I've written/arranged several pieces for string quartet and also for mallet percussion ensemble over the years, which are published
Why I play with PSO: Great music, great conductor, great colleagues
When not playing in PSO: I'm a professor at UCSF
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: so many of them, but possibly Rachmaninoff Symphony #2

Trombone

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Donald Couch
Trombone

Joined in 2016
Contributes to community arts: I play diverse musical ensembles and work with the Peninsula Youth Orchestra.
Why I play with PSO: I enjoy playing fine music with a fine conductor
When not playing in PSO: I teach trombone and work as a translator and interpreter (Spanish<>English).
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Elgar Enigma Variations
David Allmon
Trombone

Joined in 2010
Contributes to community arts: I also perform with Master Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra and a jazz sextet that has occasional forays into klezmer and dixieland.
Why I play with PSO: I love getting to escape the day-to-day stresses and make music with other fine musicians.
When not playing in PSO: I lead program management teams and help bring consumer products to market. In the past this has included PCs, eReaders, tablets, smartphones and most recently the Portal from Facebook.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Holst, The Planets

Trumpet

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Bob Fitt
Trumpet

Joined in 2006
Contributes to community arts: I also play wind ensemble music with the Ohlone Wind Orchestra
Why I play with PSO: 1. Challenging and interesting large scale symphonic music, 2. performed by talented musical colleagues who are committed to the group and who practice and strive to improve their playing, and 3. Maestro Klein's kindness and steady, professional leadership
When not playing in PSO: I am a Dentist (general family practice)
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Camille Saint-Saens Organ Symphony
Rick Leder
Trumpet

Joined in 1999
Contributes to community arts: Go into schools to coach trumpets (E.g. Lynbrook HS in San Jose); encourage young students to seek mastery of the trumpet
Why I play with PSO: Love to play the orchestral literature in great performing venues. Enjoy the camaraderie of fellow musicians who play for the love of it.
When not playing in PSO: Teach trumpet and school music; perform on trumpet in local opera and orchestra groups.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Prokofiev Alexander Nevsky

Viola

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Elyse Ader
Viola

Joined in 2017
Contributes to community arts: I play chamber music concerts with my colleagues in non-traditional venues; including houses/apartments, and bars. The goal is to help create new audiences for classical music by bringing it to people who might not normally go to a concert hall. It's nice to play in intimate settings and interact with the audience members.
Why I play with PSO: I love the programing, and there are so many talented musicians. Everyone is very welcoming and it creates such a wonderful and positive environment. I am inspired by being around so many musicians who love and value what they are doing.
When not playing in PSO: Being a musician is my day job! I play in a few regional orchestras, freelance and teach private lessons.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: I've really enjoyed a lot of the newer works we've played, including pieces by Anna Clyne and Mason Bates. In terms of the more traditional rep., I have to go with Bernstein's Symphonic Dances from West Side Story and Gustav Holst's "The Planets."
Elon Bauer
Viola

Joined in 2015
Contributes to community arts: I play the drums in a bagpipe band.
Why I play with PSO: I love playing music, plain and simple. I leave every rehearsal feeling energized and excited. I can't imagine life without it. PSO provides challenging and fun repertoire, while also being a generally great group of people.
When not playing in PSO: I work at Apple making iPhone and iPad computer chips.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Elgar's Enigma or Beethoven's 9th or Bernstein's Symphonic Dances
Elizabeth Ingber
Viola

Joined in 2015
Contributes to community arts: I play with the Peninsula Scottish Fiddlers.
Why I play with PSO: It's a great opportunity to play with a strong group of musicians.
When not playing in PSO: I teach music to children and adults, as well as freelance as a pianist and violist.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Elgar's Enigma Variations and Prokofiev's Symphony No. 5
Amanda Myers
Viola

Joined in 2018
Contributes to community arts: I attend local concerts when I can, but would love to get even more involved in the arts community.
Why I play with PSO: I enjoy being a part of the Bay Area arts community and playing great music.
When not playing in PSO: I work at ChargePoint as a Public Policy Manager, which means that I work on policies that promote the deployment of electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure and adoption of EVs. Outside of work and music, I love to run, hike, bike, swim, read, and cook.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Symphony No. 2, Op. 73 - Brahms
David Chen
Viola

Joined in 2016
Contributes to community arts: I teach violin and viola and students in CYS.
Why I play with PSO: I remember after the show of Scheherazade, outside the theater, an old couple shaked my hand and told me it was so moving, so beautiful. They appreciate Peninsula Symphony to bring them a wonderful evening. To provide joy is my goal in PSO.
When not playing in PSO: I worked in the Semiconductor Industry, especially in the Electrical Engineering.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Rimsky Korsakov, Scheherazade
Carolyn Worthington
Viola

Joined in 2016
Contributes to community arts: I play with various musical theater groups on the peninsula.
Why I play with PSO: To play challenging music with a group of great musicians.
When not playing in PSO: Mom of three boys, Real Estate Appraiser specializing in Property and Estate Taxes, and a Jewelry Designer.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Enigma Variations
Jerry Saliman
Viola

Joined in 2010
Contributes to community arts: I am the violin accompanist for HaShirim, a Jewish Community Chorale
Why I play with PSO: I have played classical music all my life, and I am grateful for the opportunity to perform fantastic music under the baton of wonderful PSO conductors.
When not playing in PSO: I volunteer as a physician at Samaritan House free clinic in San Mateo, and I play with my four granddaughters.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: It seems that each piece of music I play for a performance becomes my favorite at that moment.
Jolynda Tresner
Viola

Joined in 1984
Contributes to community arts: Led family and children’s music program in Campbell for many years including young children’s church choir. Perform with local theater production orchestras. Active choir member and vocal soloist.
Why I play with PSO: I’ve always played in an orchestra since school days. PSO because of its superb programming, and family ties.
When not playing in PSO: I fly to HNL and back on Monday and Thursday usually, for a major airline. (All in one day.) Times have changed a bit and my schedule is more in flux. It was New Zealand most recently. Very short stay, in order to be back for Tuesday rehearsals.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: I fall in love with just about every set we are playing. It replays in my heart and head throughout the rehearsal month, and so promininetly that I jokingly tell my co workers and friends “if the music in my head is too loud, I’m sorry but I’m not quite sure how to turn it down.” And then go on to tell them about our upcoming program, or what we rehearsed the night before. And of course I loved playing the the “Amherst Requiem” and “Come Christmas” in beautiful Memorial Church.

Violin I

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Daniel Cher
Violin I

Joined in 2016
Contributes to community arts: I play accordion at Congregation Beth Am in a klezmer group.
Why I play with PSO: It's great fun to make music with friends. PSO attracts great soloists and we tackle challenging and inspiring (titanic!) pieces. Like Firebird and Prok 5.
When not playing in PSO: I design, run and analyze clinical trials for medical device companies.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Beethoven's 9th
Debra Fong
Violin I

Joined in 2015
Contributes to community arts: I am a Lecturer in Violin and Chamber Music at Stanford University, and I also maintain a private violin studio in Palo Alto. I am on the coaching faculty for Young Chamber Musicians, I am a guest conductor for Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra, and I adjudicate several Bay Area young artist concerto competitions each year. In addition to my position as Concertmaster of the Peninsula Symphony, I perform regularly throughout the Bay Area with ensembles such as San Francisco Chamber Orchestra, Opera San Jose, Symphony Silicon Valley, and San Jose Chamber Orchestra. In the summers, I perform as a first violinist with The Santa Fe Opera Orchestra in New Mexico. In August 2018, I performed a recital in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which raised funds for the restoration project of San Miguel Chapel, the oldest church in the USA.
Why I play with PSO: I was invited by Maestro Mitchell Klein in 2014 to be guest concertmaster, and I enjoyed the experience of working with him and the Peninsula Symphony. Mitch asked me to continue as concertmaster, a position I have held since 2015. As a full-time professional musician, I appreciate the passion and commitment of the musicians in the Peninsula Symphony. The orchestra is a wonderful group of people, and due to Mitch Klein's leadership, the group always rises to the occasion and brings its deep dedication and positive energy to the stage at performances.
When not playing in PSO: I am a full-time professional classical violinist. Teaching violin and performing on the violin are all I do -- and I'm grateful to be fortunate enough to do exactly what I love to do!
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: I try to remain musically open-minded, so I don't have a favorite piece that I've performed with the Peninsula Symphony.
Liana Isaacson
Violin I

Joined in 2016
Contributes to community arts: I play violin and sing on the worship team at my church.
Why I play with PSO: PSO is one of those rare high-caliber community orchestras. We play fun pieces and we play them well!
When not playing in PSO: I'm a Speech Pathologist at an elementary school in Milpitas
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Scheherazade or Brahms 2
Sandra E. Larragoiti, PhD
Violin I

Joined in 1984
Contributes to community arts: Other than offering donations and attending musical venues, as an educator, I strongly encourage youth to take up an instrument and to participate in musician events.
Why I play with PSO: I enjoy the challenge of reading all this great music! I also thoroughly enjoy how Maestro Mitch helps us interpret the composer's intention. This is a wonderful group of musician; I am honored to be part of this symphony.
When not playing in PSO: I am a college professor at Notre Dame de Namur University as a Senior Lecturer, Adjunct Faculty. I am retired from School Counseling.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Mozart! I have also enjoyed playing anything by Beethoven. Working with the soloists is always a treat!
Carol Roedder
Violin I

Joined in 1974
Contributes to community arts: I support community orchestras and musicians in the Sierras.
Why I play with PSO: Performing allows me to introduce music from the classics to pop to audiences. We need music now more than ever to balance our lives in these chaotic times.
When not playing in PSO: I’m a retired teacher, so now I hike, bike, do yoga, and read.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Mahler Symphony #5
Dana Scoby
Violin I

Joined in 1999
Contributes to community arts: Many of my students are currently playing with the Peninsula Youth Orchestra and other youth orchestras in the area. This is my goal for them, to establish a solid foundation they will have their entire lives. I also enjoy being an on-call musician for special and holiday gigs. A yearly favorite is playing the entire Messiah with a chamber group with a sing-along crowd. I love to see and hear people of all ages enjoying themselves.
Why I play with PSO: The quality of musicianship of its players, the mastery of Mitch Klein as conductor, and the thoughtful selection of soloists and repertoire combine to make PSO a fantastic community orchestra to play with.
When not playing in PSO: I have several jobs and many interests. I primarily teach violin and piano to private students and am music director for an after school violin program consisting of 60 students at Cherry Chase Elementary in Sunnyvale, CA. This will be my 15th year teaching and inspiring these kids! On the side I still do some copy editing (previously a marketing/pr executive) and am an antique dealer.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: There have been so many great pieces from symphonies to contemporary pieces, classical to jazz. I really enjoyed playing the Planets and South Pacific last season.
Matt Springer
Violin I

Joined in 1999
Contributes to community arts: I've written/arranged several pieces for string quartet and also for mallet percussion ensemble over the years, which are published
Why I play with PSO: Great music, great conductor, great colleagues
When not playing in PSO: I'm a professor at UCSF
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: so many of them, but possibly Rachmaninoff Symphony #2
Katharine Wahl
Violin I

Joined in 2006
Contributes to community arts: I'm an avid concertgoer. I perform in other ensembles, too.
Why I play with PSO: PSO is a wonderful group, and a wonderful group of musicians. (And I've attended an orchestra rehearsal every Tuesday night since I was 10. Can't imagine what else I'd do with the evening!)
When not playing in PSO: I am editor-in-chief of the Stanford University Press. I direct the book publishing program and personally acquire all our books in Middle East studies.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Beethoven 9 and any and all Mahler.
Sandy Wan
Violin I

Joined in 2017
Why I play with PSO: Playing in an orchestra has been an integral part of my identity and growth as a musician. I participated in various levels and genres of ensemble music throughout my youth, ranging from small classical chamber groups to major symphonic orchestras and even a recreational student-run orchestra that played music from video games. I greatly enjoy the experience of mastering and performing amazing works with my fellow musicians and am always excited to learn more diverse repertoire!
When not playing in PSO: I work in design and construction management at San Francisco International Airport.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: I'm very new to the group, but a few of my favorite selections to date have been Holst's Planets, the Tallis Fantasia, and the Hanson Symphony!
Judy Streger
Violin I

Joined in 1984
Contributes to community arts: I perform with high school theatre productions as well as Hillbarn Theater in Foster City.
Why I play with PSO: It is a superb community orchestra with wonderfully talented musicians led by an even more talented conductor.
When not playing in PSO: Retired Speech Pathologist/ Travel
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Any Tchaikovski Symphony!
Ann Edwards
Violin I

Joined in 2017
Contributes to community arts: I enjoy playing in orchestras in various other performing arts like ballet, opera, and choral concerts.
Why I play with PSO: The quality of the musicians and the camaraderie, as well as Mitch's leadership and warmth.
When not playing in PSO: I am a senior research associate at WestEd, an educational research and development agency. I help to lead a national network of colleges and universities focused on the reform of teaching and learning in entry level mathematics courses.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Brahms 2
Veronica Cedillos
Violin I

Joined in 2014
Contributes to community arts: I occasionally play mariachi music.
Why I play with PSO: I get to play great music alongside awesome musicians.
When not playing in PSO: I run a nonprofit focused on reducing death and suffering from natural hazards in the world's most vulnerable communities.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Brahms Symphony No. 2

Violin II

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Susanne Bohl
Violin II

Joined in 2013
Contributes to community arts: My support of the arts otherwise is mostly by attending shows, concerts, and exhibitions and by making occasional donations.
Why I play with PSO: Playing violin with the Peninsula Symphony has become one of the steady highlights of my week. I enjoy the repertoire and the people, and find this to be one of my best work-life balance activities.
When not playing in PSO: I am a Real Estate agent with Coldwell Banker for the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Elgar Enigma Variations
Beatrice Chau
Violin II

Joined in 2017
Why I play with PSO: IMO, we are the Bay Area's premier volunteer orchestra and playing with the Peninsula Symphony allows me to keep up my violin skills.
When not playing in PSO: I help with operations and development at Peninsula Symphony!
Gabrielle Cutler
Violin II

Joined in 2018
Why I play with PSO: We get to play wonderful music with talented musicians.
When not playing in PSO: I am an attorney at a civil litigation firm.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Grieg, Piano Concerto, Op. 16, in A Minor
Kevin Dong
Violin II

Joined in 2014
Contributes to community arts: I participate in other ensembles around the Bay, including Masterworks Chorale (bass voice), BareStage Productions at UC Berkeley (keyboard), Bay Area Rainbow Symphony (violin), and San Francisco Lesbian/Gay Freedom band (clarinet).
Why I play with PSO: I enjoy playing a variety of orchestral music with a great ensemble.
When not playing in PSO: My day job is writing code, and I enjoy practicing kung fu and bicycling.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Stravinsky's Firebird Suite
Nadin El-Yabroudi
Violin II

Joined in 2017
Contributes to community arts: I play ukulele with my friends.
Why I play with PSO: I love playing with the other great musicians at PSO and meeting the great soloists we attract.
When not playing in PSO: I run, cook, and build secure software.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 5
Frank Rahn
Violin II

Joined in 2005
Contributes to community arts: I was on the PSO Board for a number of years, serving on a number of of committees and officer positions.
Why I play with PSO: We're a community of great musicians that play great music.
When not playing in PSO: I do consulting in the energy industry, particularly related to electrical power generation and transmission
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Anything Beethoven, especially the 6th Symphony
Jshon Thomas
Violin II

Joined in 2004
Contributes to community arts: I play rock and jazz violin with friends in garage bands.
Why I play with PSO: We perform music that inspire and challenge our audience. I am also thrilled by our supporting school music programs with the Bridges to Music.
When not playing in PSO: I design training and employment development programs for a national financial services organization.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet
Alexander Wang
Violin II

Joined in 2017
Contributes to community arts: I occasionally enjoy picking out popular tunes from various media or games to cover on my Violin for fun, either by ear or transcription.
Why I play with PSO: Mitch does a great job in shaping and elevating the level of musicianship through his rehearsing and conducting. I hope that the ensemble can continue to push for excellence in our performances, so that we can rise to the occasion when given challenging repertoire.
When not playing in PSO: I am a systems software engineer by day.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Prokofiev Symphony No. 5

Violoncello

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Alan Bien
Violoncello

Joined in 1977
Contributes to community arts: I lead the Peninsula Symphony Association as Board Chair.
Why I play with PSO: We perform challenging repertoire with outstanding guest artists.
When not playing in PSO: I am a realtor, property manager, and real estate investor/developer
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Beethoven's Ninth Symphony
Eitan Cher
Violoncello

Joined in 2017
Contributes to community arts: I play in two string quartets with friends in SF.
Why I play with PSO: Getting to play great music under a phenomenal conductor!
When not playing in PSO: I work as a Senior Mechanical Engineer at Symmetry Labs, designing huge LED sculptures for concerts and more.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Prokofiev Symphony #5
Oliver Hsu
Violoncello

Joined in 2018
Contributes to community arts: I am also member of another orchestra and love to play chamber music, and occasionally sing in choir. In the past I've also volunteered by giving concerts in hospitals and senior care centers, and also taught cello and theory classes in a music school for many years (but not anymore (but likely will someday again)).
Why I play with PSO: Great orchestra & fun repertoire!
When not playing in PSO: I work in a startup, building a platform for automating big data pipeline building, optimization, and maintenance.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Brahms 2nd Symphony
Tetsu Ishihara
Violoncello

Joined in 2000
Why I play with PSO: variety of music selections
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: Mozart
Kirsten Shallenberg
Violoncello

Joined in 2016
Contributes to community arts: I sing and play keys in Fleetwood Macrame, a Fleetwood Mac tribute band that performs all over the Bay Area! I also freelance as a cellist for musicals, quartets, trios, and other interesting gigs.
Why I play with PSO: We play interesting, challenging music at a high level, and I really enjoy playing under Mitch's direction. He is a great conductor!
When not playing in PSO: I am the private lesson program manager for Community School of Music and Arts in Mountain View.
Favorite musical selection played in PSO: That's a tough question! Maybe The Planets by Holst... maybe Brahms' Second Symphony... but Bernstein's West Side Story Symphonic Dances were awfully fun as well!
Gail Shen
Violoncello

Joined in 2017
Why I play with PSO: I love the PSO community and getting to play challenging (& fun!) music alongside such talented musicians from all seasons of life.
When not playing in PSO: I work for a nonprofit organization that improves the quality of education for underserved schools worldwide.