Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Welcomes New Musicians

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra today announced several orchestra personnel updates at the start of its Centennial season. The BSO's rigorous selection process draws from a national pool of exceptionally talented musicians and involves multiple rounds of auditions before a panel of peer musicians from the Orchestra and Music Director Marin Alsop. New players who join the Orchestra complete a probationary period of 16 months with the ensemble before they are granted tenure. Four new musicians, who won auditions last spring and over the summer, have been appointed to tenure track positions:

  • Michael Ferraguto , Principal Librarian, is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross, where he studied Music and French, and served as the concertmaster of the Holy Cross Chamber Orchestra. Following college, he worked and held fellowships with the Tanglewood Music Festival and the New World Symphony. Prior to joining the BSO, Michael was the Librarian of the Alabama Symphony Orchestra.

  • Boram Kang , Section Second Violin, a native of Seoul, Korea, came to the states at age 13 to study with BSO violinist Leri Slutski at Peabody Preparatory. She later studied with Jody Gatwood at Catholic University of America in Washington D.C; Charles Castleman at the Eastman School of Music; with William Preucil at the Master of Music and Professional Studies at Cleveland Institute of Music; and a Performance Residency Program at Carnegie Mellon School of Music with Andres Cardenes. Previous to her BSO appointment she was concertmaster at the Pacific Music Festival in Japan and a member of the Canton Symphony Orchestra and the Akron Symphony Orchestra and served as Assistant concertmaster of the Louisville Orchestra for the 2012-13 season. Most recently, she has served as the fixed forth chair of the Colorado Symphony.

  • Lin Ma , Assistant Principal Clarinet/Third and E-flat Clarinet, a native of China, studied at Rice University with Richie Hawley, and he holds a Bachelor's Degree from Oberlin Conservatory of Music where he studied with Richard Hawkins. Prior to his Baltimore appointment, he served in a one-year position as second clarinet in the Houston Symphony, and in 2014 won the Ima Hogg International Competition and performed as soloist with the Orchestra at Jones Hall. Later, he appeared as soloist at the Baytown Symphony Orchestra's 2014-15 season opener. In addition, Ma has soloed with National Repertory Orchestra at the NRO music festival in 2013.

  • Kevin Smith , Section First Violin (serving as Acting Assistant Concertmaster for the 2015-16 season), is a native of Dallas, Texas, and was a student of Julia Bushkova at the University of North Texas. At the Cleveland Institute of Music, he earned a Master of Music degree in the studio of Stephen Rose, Principal Second Violin of The Cleveland Orchestra. While attending CIM, Smith was awarded the 2015 Helen C. Webster Award for Outstanding Graduate Student. Before joining the Baltimore Symphony, Smith was a member of the Akron and Canton Symphony Orchestras, acted as concertmaster for the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra, and has performed with The Cleveland Orchestra.

Additionally, Principal Violist Lisa Steltenpohl, Assistant Principal Violist Karin Brown, and Second French Horn Lisa Bergman have all been granted tenure with the Orchestra.

The BSO is also pleased to announce the extension of Assistant Conductor Nicholas Hersh's contract through the 2015-16 season. In this role, Hersh will conduct the Orchestra in several programs over the course of the season, including performances of the film Home Alone with live orchestra; a run-out concert to Chesapeake College in Wye Mills featuring Copland's Suite from The Tenderland, the Barber violin concerto with soloist Simone Porter, and works by Gershwin; and concerts in the Family series this spring, featuring Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf. Hersh is the conductor of the BSO's innovative new Pulse series, concerts featuring cross-genre collaborations with popular indie rock bands, aimed at attracting and engaging a younger audience demographic. Other responsibilities include serving as assistant conductor to Music Director Marin Alsop and for visiting guest conductors. An accomplished composer, Hersh has made several arrangements of encores and other incidental music for the BSO, including theStar-Spangled Banner; Pharrell Williams' Happy; and music for BSO collaborations the Pulse concerts bands Dawes, Dr. Dog, and The Lone Bellow.

Additionally, the BSO has extended Michael Repper's BSO-Peabody Conducting Fellowship. A student of Music Director Marin Alsop, Repper will continue to serve as an apprentice to Maestra Alsop while continuing his studies at the Peabody Institute.

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