Orchestra Members in the 2019-2020 season (as of Aug. 2019)
Callie Brennan, Interim Concertmaster
Robin Hague Els, Assistant Concertmaster
Sarah Johnson, Concertmaster Emeritus
Halee Joo, Principal
Alvoy Bryan, Principal
Arthur Ross*, Assistant Principal
Diana Maley Berti**
Brianna Tam, Principal
Kathy Foster, Assistant Principal
Ian Bracchitta**, Principal
Matthew Waid, Assistant Principal
J. Bret Alford
Flute & Piccolo
Rhea Jacobus, Principal
Oboe & English Horn
Ginny Metzger, Principal
Kelly Vaneman, Associate Principal
Mary AllyeB Purtle
Karen Hill, Principal
Frank Watson**, Principal
Stephanie Lipka Rhyne
Anneka Zuehlke-King**, Principal
Andrew Merideth, Assistant Principal
Tyler Jones, Principal
Mark Britt, Principal
John Holloway, Principal
Patrick Lowery**, Principal
Adena McDaniel, Co-Principal
Matt McDaniel, Co-Principal
Emily Waggoner, Principal
Piano & Organ
Brennan Szafron, Principal
* denotes substitute musician, playing 2 or more concerts in the 2019-2020 season
**denotes Orchestra Committee Members
Callie Brennan hails from the sunny state of Maine, which is where she first held a violin at the tender age of four. As an adolescent she studied with Ronald Lantz of the Portland String Quartet, and received regular coachings in chamber music from the PSQ.
While pursuing her Bachelor’s degree at The University of Colorado, Callie studied with Lina Bahn and Harumi Rhodes. During this time she studied abroad in Sydney, Australia, studying with Ole Bohn at the Sydney Conservatorium. This travel prompted her to look abroad for postgraduate study, and led her to The Guildhall School of Music and Drama. In 2016 she moved to London, England, where she completed two Masters Degrees in Music and Violin performance. During her studies at Guildhall, Callie studied with Stephanie Gonley and Ofer Falk, and had numerous opportunities to receive coachings from other internationally renowned musicians. She performed twice under the baton of Sir Simon Rattle, playing alongside the London Symphony Orchestra, and also collaborated with the Australian Chamber Orchestra during their residency at Guildhall.
Callie has an extensive background in chamber music, having been coached by ensembles such as the Portland String Quartet, the Takacs Quartet, the Heath Quartet, Endellion Quartet, and the Zodiac Trio. As a member of the Ember String Quartet, she traveled to Spain in July 2017, attending the Fringe Festival in Torroella di Montgri. Callie was also a member of The Orchid Trio, which was awarded the St. James Chamber Music prize and a recital opportunity in Piccadilly Circus, London. In February 2018 Callie was named the Ernest Read Symphony Orchestra’s Soloist of the year, which led to her first solo performance with an orchestra; She performed the Walton Violin Concerto under the direction of Peter Stark at St. John’s Church, Waterloo.
Callie has had the pleasure of performing on The Barbican Stage and in Royal Festival Hall, the Sydney Opera House, and Boettcher Hall in Denver. Other global performance experience includes a quartet residency for the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland's summer strings courses, and attending the "Renaissance in the XXI Century" summer course in Florence, Italy. Other music festivals include the Zodiac Music Festival (France), The Bowdoin International Music Festival (USA), and The Colorado Music Festival (USA).
After moving to Asheville in 2018, Callie has enjoyed regular performance opportunities with the Asheville Symphony Orchestra, Brevard Philharmonic, and served as Principal 2nd of the Spartanburg Philharmonic in the spring of 2019. She also holds a position with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra. Callie plays on a 2005 Christopher Edel violin, made in Boston, MA.
When she's not practicing or in rehearsal, she is most likely hiking, traveling, and eating alarming amounts of chocolate.