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Woodwinds

FLUTES:    Ellie Falaris Ganelin     Ellie has been playing with AOC since she moved to the Bay in 2015. She studied music at the University of Maryland and has an eclectic background in classical, jazz, Latin, indie and experimental music. Ellie is the founder of the Greek Chamber Music Project, a presenter and label devoted to the music of Greek composers. You can find her performing chamber music around the Bay Area and beyond.

FLUTES: Ellie Falaris Ganelin

Ellie has been playing with AOC since she moved to the Bay in 2015. She studied music at the University of Maryland and has an eclectic background in classical, jazz, Latin, indie and experimental music. Ellie is the founder of the Greek Chamber Music Project, a presenter and label devoted to the music of Greek composers. You can find her performing chamber music around the Bay Area and beyond.

FLUTES:    Arturo Rodriguez     Arturo Rodriguez has been a part of the AOC team since 2014. He is a passionate and ambitious flutist, composer, and overall flute enthusiast! He graduated from University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music in 2013 and has participated in a variety of musical ensembles across the Bay Area. He is also the co-founder of two LGBTQIA-based classical ensembles.

FLUTES: Arturo Rodriguez

Arturo Rodriguez has been a part of the AOC team since 2014. He is a passionate and ambitious flutist, composer, and overall flute enthusiast! He graduated from University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music in 2013 and has participated in a variety of musical ensembles across the Bay Area. He is also the co-founder of two LGBTQIA-based classical ensembles.

OBOES:    Adrian Martin     Like many oboists, Adrian started playing the oboe because the school had a spare one at the time, and has played in a number of orchestras since then. He received most of his musical training as a member of the Choir of St John's College Cambridge and can be found performing with Emeryville Taiko around the Bay Area. He has been with the Awesome Orchestra Collective since 2015.

OBOES: Adrian Martin

Like many oboists, Adrian started playing the oboe because the school had a spare one at the time, and has played in a number of orchestras since then. He received most of his musical training as a member of the Choir of St John's College Cambridge and can be found performing with Emeryville Taiko around the Bay Area. He has been with the Awesome Orchestra Collective since 2015.

CLARINETS:    David Kashevaroff     David Kashevaroff is a mechanical engineer in the energy industry, as well as a musician (clarinet and voice). He has participated in orchestras since 2006, and with Awesome Orchestra since Session 1. He is passionate about serving the community through music, and making orchestra accessible to others. A Bay Area native, David enjoys many sports and all kinds of group games.

CLARINETS: David Kashevaroff

David Kashevaroff is a mechanical engineer in the energy industry, as well as a musician (clarinet and voice). He has participated in orchestras since 2006, and with Awesome Orchestra since Session 1. He is passionate about serving the community through music, and making orchestra accessible to others. A Bay Area native, David enjoys many sports and all kinds of group games.

CLARINETS, SAXES:    Amar Khalsa

CLARINETS, SAXES: Amar Khalsa

BASSOONS:    Kat Walsh     Kat Walsh has been playing bassoon (and viola) with Awesöme Orchestra since 2013, and especially enjoys playing new music in unconventional places... and anything with a good bassoon line. Kat currently plays in (and sometimes composes for) several ensembles around the Bay Area, and practices technology law to support her music habit.

BASSOONS: Kat Walsh

Kat Walsh has been playing bassoon (and viola) with Awesöme Orchestra since 2013, and especially enjoys playing new music in unconventional places... and anything with a good bassoon line. Kat currently plays in (and sometimes composes for) several ensembles around the Bay Area, and practices technology law to support her music habit.


BRASS

HORNS:    Nick Carnes
HORNS:    Jon Betts     Jon Betts is the guy making all the loud sounds on the French Horn! He's been playing with AOC since Session 3, and just keeps coming back. When not playing Awesöme Orchestra, he can usually be found doing musical theater, either in the pit or on stage, or slinging Magical cards. His favorite part of AOC is that it's a big family that wants to do music in new, weird, fun, and accessible ways and places!

HORNS: Jon Betts

Jon Betts is the guy making all the loud sounds on the French Horn! He's been playing with AOC since Session 3, and just keeps coming back. When not playing Awesöme Orchestra, he can usually be found doing musical theater, either in the pit or on stage, or slinging Magical cards. His favorite part of AOC is that it's a big family that wants to do music in new, weird, fun, and accessible ways and places!

TRUMPETS:    Ryan Berman     After moving from Wisconsin to the Bay Area in 2016, Ryan quickly immersed himself in the rich and inspiring music scene. It wasn’t long after he attended his first AOC session and was immediately was drawn to the group’s mission of making orchestral music accessible to players and local communities. Outside of Awesöme Orchestra, you can find Ryan performing with other community orchestras, wind ensembles, big bands, and other various chamber ensembles .

TRUMPETS: Ryan Berman

After moving from Wisconsin to the Bay Area in 2016, Ryan quickly immersed himself in the rich and inspiring music scene. It wasn’t long after he attended his first AOC session and was immediately was drawn to the group’s mission of making orchestral music accessible to players and local communities. Outside of Awesöme Orchestra, you can find Ryan performing with other community orchestras, wind ensembles, big bands, and other various chamber ensembles.

 
TROMBONES, EUPHONIUMS, TUBAS:    Bonnie & J. Maddox     Bonnie and J. first met in their community college jazz band and later graduated from Pacific Conservatory of Music. Their first Awesöme Orchestra experience was playing in  UnderCover Presents: A Tribute to Green Day’s Dookie.  It’s been a fantastic voyage from selling koozies and t-shirts at the welcome table to recording at Fantasy Studios and Zoo Labs and performing with the AÖ Big Band for Prom 2019! Outside of AÖ, Bonnie and J. are music teachers and perform with a variety of musical groups.

TROMBONES, EUPHONIUMS, TUBAS: Bonnie & J. Maddox

Bonnie and J. first met in their community college jazz band and later graduated from Pacific Conservatory of Music. Their first Awesöme Orchestra experience was playing in UnderCover Presents: A Tribute to Green Day’s Dookie. It’s been a fantastic voyage from selling koozies and t-shirts at the welcome table to recording at Fantasy Studios and Zoo Labs and performing with the AÖ Big Band for Prom 2019! Outside of AÖ, Bonnie and J. are music teachers and perform with a variety of musical groups.

 

PERCUSSION

 
PERCUSSION:    Lily Kaye Sevier     Originally hailing from Western Massachusetts, Lily can be found performing all over the Bay Area with various orchestras, theater companies, and bands. She really hates writing bios.

PERCUSSION: Lily Kaye Sevier

Originally hailing from Western Massachusetts, Lily can be found performing all over the Bay Area with various orchestras, theater companies, and bands. She really hates writing bios.

PERCUSSION:    Sage Baggott     Sage Baggott is a third-generation drummer, his early musical education consisting mostly of hanging out in nightclubs and ordering Shirley Temples on the band’s tab. In the 6th grade, all the percussionists in the school band quit, forcing him to play all parts at once, leading to his winning best musician of the year honors. It's all been downhill from there, culminating in his questionable decision to be a film composer as part of Spiky Blimp.

PERCUSSION: Sage Baggott

Sage Baggott is a third-generation drummer, his early musical education consisting mostly of hanging out in nightclubs and ordering Shirley Temples on the band’s tab. In the 6th grade, all the percussionists in the school band quit, forcing him to play all parts at once, leading to his winning best musician of the year honors. It's all been downhill from there, culminating in his questionable decision to be a film composer as part of Spiky Blimp.

 

KEYBOARDS, HaRp, & VOICES

 
KEYBOARDS & HARP:    Sheela Ramesh     Sheela Ramesh grew up playing piano, received undergrad and graduate degrees in classical singing at Carnegie Mellon University and the Royal College of Music, and now finds herself music directing, arranging/orchestrating, and composing as much as she can. After watching a few Awesöme Orchestra sessions, she began playing in Session 64, lured by John Williams’ Jurassic Park. In her nonmusical life, Sheela works to ensure that youth who've experienced trauma have opportunities to thrive.

KEYBOARDS & HARP: Sheela Ramesh

Sheela Ramesh grew up playing piano, received undergrad and graduate degrees in classical singing at Carnegie Mellon University and the Royal College of Music, and now finds herself music directing, arranging/orchestrating, and composing as much as she can. After watching a few Awesöme Orchestra sessions, she began playing in Session 64, lured by John Williams’ Jurassic Park. In her nonmusical life, Sheela works to ensure that youth who've experienced trauma have opportunities to thrive.

VOICES:    Sarah Booth     Sarah Booth, soprano, grew up in Oakland and has been performing most of her life. After being in theater for years, she changed careers and went back to nursing school! Now a Nurse Practitioner in Palliative Medicine, she is excited to be back in the music world working with wonderful people in the Awesöme Orchestra Collective. Email her anytime with questions or suggestions for awesome choral pieces to pair with orchestra and she'll pass them along to the team!

VOICES: Sarah Booth

Sarah Booth, soprano, grew up in Oakland and has been performing most of her life. After being in theater for years, she changed careers and went back to nursing school! Now a Nurse Practitioner in Palliative Medicine, she is excited to be back in the music world working with wonderful people in the Awesöme Orchestra Collective. Email her anytime with questions or suggestions for awesome choral pieces to pair with orchestra and she'll pass them along to the team!

 

STRINGS

VIOLINS:    Amy Loftus     At the age of 8, Amy Loftus decided to branch out from the piano, guitar, and saxophone lessons of her siblings and parents and picked the really expensive instrument: violin. Playing with Awesöme Orchestra since June 2013, she is usually found with yarn in tow ready to knit in strange places.

VIOLINS: Amy Loftus

At the age of 8, Amy Loftus decided to branch out from the piano, guitar, and saxophone lessons of her siblings and parents and picked the really expensive instrument: violin. Playing with Awesöme Orchestra since June 2013, she is usually found with yarn in tow ready to knit in strange places.


VIOLINS:    Amanda Mok     Amanda picked up the violin at age of 8 and has not put it down ever since. She performs regularly with local community orchestras and musicians, and has been a member of the AOC community since 2016. When not fiddling away, Amanda has also been known to tickle the ivories.

VIOLINS: Amanda Mok

Amanda picked up the violin at age of 8 and has not put it down ever since. She performs regularly with local community orchestras and musicians, and has been a member of the AOC community since 2016. When not fiddling away, Amanda has also been known to tickle the ivories.

VIOLINS:    Jene'e Patitucci     Jene'e started playing violin the moment she could join the school orchestra. She grew up playing both bluegrass and classical violin, as well as playing in punk bands, recording on metal albums, and writing her own songs. It’s no wonder that she joined AOC immediately after moving back to the Bay Area in 2016. She regularly performs with various local musicians and community orchestras, and might be involved too many other musical projects.

VIOLINS: Jene'e Patitucci

Jene'e started playing violin the moment she could join the school orchestra. She grew up playing both bluegrass and classical violin, as well as playing in punk bands, recording on metal albums, and writing her own songs. It’s no wonder that she joined AOC immediately after moving back to the Bay Area in 2016. She regularly performs with various local musicians and community orchestras, and might be involved too many other musical projects.

VIOLAS:    Susane Gahl     Susanne grew up mistakenly playing the violin. Thanks to an    unforgettable youth orchestra   , she kept playing, eventually joining various ensembles, including Berkeley Opera. Her life changed when a certain flutist gave her a viola. Finally comfortable on her instrument, she actually practiced this time. She played in SF Civic Symphony for a while and started showing up for Awesöme Orchestra Collective sessions around 2016.

VIOLAS: Susane Gahl

Susanne grew up mistakenly playing the violin. Thanks to an unforgettable youth orchestra, she kept playing, eventually joining various ensembles, including Berkeley Opera. Her life changed when a certain flutist gave her a viola. Finally comfortable on her instrument, she actually practiced this time. She played in SF Civic Symphony for a while and started showing up for Awesöme Orchestra Collective sessions around 2016.

VIOLAS:    Sahib-Amar Khalsa     Sahib-Amar began playing viola at age ten when her teacher switched her from violin because the school orchestra needed viola players. She fell in love with the sound of the viola and now playing in an orchestra is an essential part of her life. In additional to classical, she enjoys playing improv, musical shows, and devotional music (kirtan). She also teaches Kundalini Yoga and is a freelance editor. She’s a longtime member of the Vallejo Symphony and has been active in Awesöme Orchestra since its inception.

VIOLAS: Sahib-Amar Khalsa

Sahib-Amar began playing viola at age ten when her teacher switched her from violin because the school orchestra needed viola players. She fell in love with the sound of the viola and now playing in an orchestra is an essential part of her life. In additional to classical, she enjoys playing improv, musical shows, and devotional music (kirtan). She also teaches Kundalini Yoga and is a freelance editor. She’s a longtime member of the Vallejo Symphony and has been active in Awesöme Orchestra since its inception.

CELLOS:    Laura Boytz     Laura has been playing with AOC since its first year, and loves the community building and genre-crossing ethos of the group. Laura has also played with a variety of jazz and world music ensembles and in community theater pit bands throughout the Bay Area. She especially loves Cuban charanga and Brazilian choro music, and is co-host of a monthly East Bay choro roda (jam session).

CELLOS: Laura Boytz

Laura has been playing with AOC since its first year, and loves the community building and genre-crossing ethos of the group. Laura has also played with a variety of jazz and world music ensembles and in community theater pit bands throughout the Bay Area. She especially loves Cuban charanga and Brazilian choro music, and is co-host of a monthly East Bay choro roda (jam session).

CELLOS:    Anni Chapman     Anni grew up in musically inclined extended family, starting as a guitar and piano student and moving to cello as soon as she was tall enough to carry one around. After putting her music aside to focus on a career in real estate development and to raise a family, she dusted off her cello in 1998 and hasn’t looked back since. Besides doing a variety of local gigs with various groups around the Bay Area, Anni has been playing with Awesome since 2015.

CELLOS: Anni Chapman

Anni grew up in musically inclined extended family, starting as a guitar and piano student and moving to cello as soon as she was tall enough to carry one around. After putting her music aside to focus on a career in real estate development and to raise a family, she dusted off her cello in 1998 and hasn’t looked back since. Besides doing a variety of local gigs with various groups around the Bay Area, Anni has been playing with Awesome since 2015.

BASSES:    Travis Kindred     Travis is your friendly resident bass player! He's happy to say hello, give you a hug, hand you a drink you might like, and generally do whatever he can to help enable you to have an awesome time. Travis has been with AOC from the very beginning (the first session was held in his living room!). You can also find him playing with several bands in the Bay Area and serving as the education designer for Ubisoft. He's also a huge fan of D&D, Gunpla models, obscure video games and movies, and has an unreasonable love for Godzilla.

BASSES: Travis Kindred

Travis is your friendly resident bass player! He's happy to say hello, give you a hug, hand you a drink you might like, and generally do whatever he can to help enable you to have an awesome time. Travis has been with AOC from the very beginning (the first session was held in his living room!). You can also find him playing with several bands in the Bay Area and serving as the education designer for Ubisoft. He's also a huge fan of D&D, Gunpla models, obscure video games and movies, and has an unreasonable love for Godzilla.

BASSES:    Amanda Wu    Amanda Wu has been part of the AOC community since its first year. As an active bassist, fundraiser, and events manager, Amanda is proud to contribute to the performing arts scene in the Bay Area. Outside of musical activities, Amanda can be found eating food and climbing rocks.

BASSES: Amanda Wu
Amanda Wu has been part of the AOC community since its first year. As an active bassist, fundraiser, and events manager, Amanda is proud to contribute to the performing arts scene in the Bay Area. Outside of musical activities, Amanda can be found eating food and climbing rocks.


RESIDENT GUEST CONDUCTOR

GUEST CONDUCTOR:    Brian Adam McCune

GUEST CONDUCTOR: Brian Adam McCune

Brian Adam McCune is a Colombian-American composer based in Oakland. He is a founding member of the Awesöme Orchestra Collective, starting in the percussion section and making his way up to the podium often enough to be named the first Resident Guest Conductor in 2018.  He arranges for the group as well, having contributed to over 20 pieces in AOC's 5- year history (see the Repetoire page for examples).  He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master's Degree in Music Composition from New School University in New York. Find out more at brianadammccune.com