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Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra Welcomes Five New Musicians to Its Ranks

September 18, 2008

Rochester, NY – When the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra season opens in October, there will be a number of new faces onstage, as the Orchestra welcomes five new full-time orchestra musicians to its wind, brass, and strings sections after holding national auditions.

Colin Corner begins the season as the RPO’s new Principal Bass, after two years in the bass section of the Minnesota Orchestra.  Prior to his time in Minnesota, he was the Associate Principal Bass with the Vancouver Symphony. A graduate of Indiana University in the studio of Lawrence Hurst, Mr. Corner has been a recipient of numerous awards, including first place in the 2003 International Society of Bassists Orchestral Competition, which led to a one-week internship with the Detroit Symphony.  In 2001, he received third place in the same competition.  Mr. Corner also pursues his passion for jazz and improvisation, playing in a diverse group of musical ensembles including as a founding member of the Jetsam Organic Ensemble, an innovative acoustic jazz quartet.  At the RPO, Mr. Corner succeeds former Principal Bass Robert Zimmerman, who will continue as a member of the bass section.

New Assistant Principal Horn is Alex Rosenfeld, who assumes this position while Matthew Annin is on a one-year leave of absence.  Mr. Rosenfeld comes to the RPO from the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, where he held the same position from 2005-08.  Originally from Philadelphia, he earned a bachelor of music degree from Northwestern University in 2003, and a master of music from the San Francisco Conservatory in 2005 as a student of Robert Ward.  While in the Bay Area, Mr. Rosenfeld played Second Horn in the Santa Cruz Symphony, and performed with many other regional orchestras and with the San Francisco Symphony.  He has performed in numerous summer festivals including Tanglewood, Spoleto USA, the National Repertory Orchestra, and others.

Anna Steltenpohl begins the season as Second Oboe/English Horn.  Originally from Illinois, Ms. Steltenpohl is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music and The Juilliard School.  Her teachers have included Elaine Douvas, Pedro Diaz, Nathan Hughes, Richard Woodhams, and Jonathan Fischer. She has performed as principal oboe with the New York City Ballet Orchestra, Honolulu Symphony, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and New Jersey Symphony.  She has attended the Pacific Music Festival and the Aspen Music Festival and School.  In addition to being featured on National Public Radio’s nationally syndicated “From the Top,” she and her twin sister Lisa, a violist, have starred in the educational video series “Musical Encounters” and on Philadelphia television.

Lars Kirvan already has a few months under his belt as the RPO’s Third Chair Cello, having performed with the Orchestra in its summer concerts.  A native of Fairfax, Virginia, he attended the Cleveland Institute of Music where he studied with Stephen Geber.  Mr. Kirvan has performed with the Cleveland Orchestra, the National Symphony, and New World Symphony Orchestra under Michael Tilson Thomas, and with the Verbier Festival Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra.

South Carolina native Benjamin Krug is the RPO’s new Fourth Chair Cello.  Although beginning the cello at the age of six, Mr. Krug’s career took a temporary vocal diversion for three years, during which time he studied and toured throughout the United States and abroad as a member of the American Boychoir.  Returning to his original cello roots, Mr. Krug graduated with a bachelor’s degree in music from St. Olaf College in Minnesota in 2004. Two years later, he received his master’s degree in cello performance under Stephen Geber from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where he stayed to complete a Professional Studies certificate in 2008.  Most recently, Mr. Krug was a member of the Akron and Canton symphonies.

Celebrating its 86th season in 2008-09, the RPO inspires and enriches the community through the art of music, presenting nearly 200 performances each season to a combined audience of an estimated quarter of a million people, including more than 70,000 who experience the RPO’s broad range of educational and community programs.  The Orchestra is passionately dedicated to outstanding musical performance at the highest artistic levels, and has a unique tradition of musical versatility, commitment to music education in the broadest sense and a deep and enduring engagement with the community.  The RPO has been honored with the New York State Governor’s Arts Award and two recent ASCAP awards for adventurous programming. 

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