Andrew Sommer joined the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 2023 after being appointed by Music Director Riccardo Muti. Originally from Atlanta, Sommer previously served as principal bass of the Richmond Symphony Orchestra for four years.
Sommer also has performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, including on its 2014 tour to Carnegie Hall, and with the New Haven Symphony Orchestra. He spent three summers as a member of the Verbier Festival Orchestra in Verbier, Switzerland, and was a fellow at the Aspen Music Festival, where he performed with the Aspen Chamber Symphony. Sommer also performs with the chamber orchestra Taiwan Connection.
In addition to his orchestral work, Sommer enjoys playing bass in other genres and performed at the 2013 Grammy Awards with the Grammy Jazz Combo alongside Latin superstar Juanes.
Sommer received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Juilliard School, where he studied with Albert Laszlo. He also studied with Leigh Mesh and Hal Robinson. His jazz mentors include Kevin Bales and John Patitucci. Sommer’s father, the late Douglas Sommer, was his first mentor and teacher and was a renowned bassist and educator, who was a member of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra for 25 years. He plays on his father’s bass, an Enrico Bajoni made in Italy circa 1875.