Leoni Zverow McVey

What inspires your love of music?

I was raised with music. My father was in the Chicago Symphony for 43 years. I started attending school concerts at about 8 years old but was taken to concerts by my mother from about age 5 on. I have taken my children to the CSO children’s concerts and now our grandson to the same concerts.

What initially drew you to the CSO?

The CSO was my family. I was involved with musicians and their wives, children and activities until several years after my father died, because one of my friends married a CSO musician whom I had known for many years. I had friends in the CSO whom I had met through my father. More than that, I learned that my standards for music were pretty high and that the CSO was what I expected music to sound like. When one grows up with the best, you don’t really know much else.

Why do you feel it’s important to support the CSOA as a member of the Theodore Thomas Society?

I once read that the arts make us more fully human. I absolutely feel that way about music. I can’t imagine the world without music. In fact, somewhat to my amazement, I have found the two categories of life I have most missed during the COVID-19 shutdown are my Chicago Symphony and Lyric Opera live performances and contact with my friends and family. I also feel very strongly that it is important not only to make music available to the next generation but also to give back to the world what I received.

John Nelson
Theodore Thomas Society member
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Rick and Pat Berlet
Theodore Thomas Society members
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Glen Madeja and Janet Steidl
Theodore Thomas Society members
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