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New faces in the Utah Symphony lineup

Published September 24, 2013 10:35 am

Music • Four newcomers are ready to make music and scale mountains.
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You'll see four new musicians onstage when the Utah Symphony performs "The Damnation of Faust" next weekend.

Graeme Mutchler

Instrument • Bass trombone

Age • 29

Education • Wheaton College, Juilliard School of Music

Mutchler, a Dallas native, said he didn't know much about Utah before taking the Utah Symphony audition, but he's a fan of his veteran colleagues in the low brass section, principal trombonist Larry Zalkind and tuba player Gary Ofenloch. "Not every job brings with it a great section," he said. "I learn something every day." Like most newcomers to the orchestra, he's attracted to the state's outdoor culture; he said he and his wife, Brandee, who's studying to become a chiropractor, will hit the hiking trails as soon as they can find a baby backpack for their 9-month-old daughter.

Travis Peterson

Position • Principal trumpet

Age • 30

Education • Indiana University, New England Conservatory of Music

Peterson enjoys hiking, camping and skiing with his wife, freelance videographer Andrea Kile Peterson — activities that were difficult to engage in during the three years the couple lived in Miami Beach, where Peterson played with the New World Symphony. "We're not beach people," the Minnesota native said. "Here, we could do something [outdoors] almost every day." Peterson said he's long been aware of the Utah Symphony's reputation; one of his undergraduate professors at Indiana University, Edmund Cord, was the orchestra's principal trumpeter in the 1980s.

Jennifer Rhodes

Instrument • Bassoon

Age • 39

Education • Juilliard School of Music, Eastman School of Music

Rhodes, who grew up in the New York City area, was principal bassoonist with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra for seven years. She was a regular substitute with the Utah Symphony last year, then auditioned and won a permanent position. She is pleased to be joining the orchestra at a time when music director Thierry Fischer is hiring many new players, and she looks forward to spending time hiking and skiing in Utah's mountains.

Julie Wunderle

Instrument • Violin

Age • 27

Education • Indiana University

Wunderle already has jumped into the Salt Lake City music scene, performing on the Intermezzo Chamber Music Series with some of her new Utah Symphony colleagues this summer. She grew up with three musical siblings in Indiana, frequently playing in family ensembles. "Being from the Midwest, I'm drawn to a state with mountains, especially after living in Denver," said Wunderle, who played with the Colorado Symphony for a year before being hired in Utah.






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