What inspires your love of music?
Growing up, we always had all sorts of music in the house, though not classical. As a child, I had lung issues, so the doctor recommended I play the flute. I went on to play the flute for many years because I enjoyed playing it and realized that I liked that kind of music. I didn’t really discover classical music until the 1970s, when I started hearing it on TV. I especially enjoyed the coloratura in the voices of Beverly Stills and Marilyn Horn, which first led me to opera and then later to orchestral music.
My love of classical music has been completely self-developed. After I started attending Chicago Symphony Orchestra concerts, I began reading more about classical music and listening to it at home. Today I listen to some sort of classical music every day. I particularly enjoy when a concert introduces me to a new piece of music that I’ve never heard of before.
What initially drew you to the CSO?
My first CSO concert was during the Solti era, and the more I listened to concerts, the more I realized I really like classical music. There’s something about it that gets me so excited. Some of it is so beautiful I could cry. As a former flautist, I particularly enjoy watching and listening to the flute section. Jennifer Gunn’s performance of the Vivaldi C Major Concerto in 2019 was incredibly moving.
The CSO is an important part of my life. When I was helping my mother after she developed dementia, the Orchestra was a comfort to me. Listening to the Orchestra is such a great experience to sit there and relax after a long week. It really finishes the day nicely.
Why do you feel it’s important to support the CSOA as a member of the Theodore Thomas Society?
I want to help keep the CSO going for many years so that younger generations can experience it like I have. It is my hope that through my support of the Orchestra, I can support the music education of children.