The renowned San Francisco Symphony visits Iowa this Friday, March 29, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. in Stephens Auditorium at Iowa State University. Three Iowa natives who are members of the symphony will be returning to their Iowa roots as they perform with the symphony.
The three members of the symphony with Iowa ties are Jacob Nissly, originally from Grimes, John Engelkes, originally from Parkersburg, and Linda Lukas, who studied at the University of Iowa.
Bass trombonist John Engelkes has been a member of the San Francisco Symphony since 1981. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Northern Iowa and went on to receive his master’s degree from Northwestern University. He has performed in the Northwestern Wind Ensemble, Northwestern Symphony, Chicago Pops, and the Baltimore Symphony. In addition to being a founding member of Bay Brass, he currently serves as a faculty member at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
The San Francisco Symphony is “widely considered to be among the most artistically adventurous and innovative arts institutions in the United States.” The symphony was founded in 1911 after the devastating 1906 earthquake and fire. More than 100 years later, the symphony has won some of the world’s most prestigious recording awards, including “Japan’s Record Academy Award, France’s Grand Prix du Disque, Britain’s Gramophone Award, and a bundle of Grammy® awards.” The San Francisco Symphony is led by Michael Tilson Thomas, the longest-tenured music director at any major American orchestra. His recordings have won numerous international awards, and he has received countless awards as a composer and conductor, including the President’s Award from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences and Conductor of the Year.
The San Francisco Symphony will perform the following program:
RAVEL Le Tombeau de Couperin
MENDELSSOHN Violin Concerto in E Minor, op. 64 (with Alexander Kerr, violin soloist)
SIBELIUS Symphony No. 2 in D
Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director
Alexander Kerr, violin
IPR’s Jacqueline Halbloom connected with John Engelkes for an exclusive phone interview.