Erin Lano, is the Columbus Symphony Orchestra’s newest horn player. She joins the CSO this year as a full-time musician after having subbed for two years.
Originally from Richmond, VA and a veteran marathon runner, she’s currently in the process of moving from Chicago to Columbus in the next week or so. She was kind enough to talk to me via Skype, hence the reason behind her having lent me some pictures – which are a tad more formal than those I took of her fellow horn players!
So please let me take this opportunity to introduce you to her.
Everyone: Meet Erin!
Hometown: Richmond, VA
Alma Mater: B.M. New England conservatory of Music (studied under James Sommerville) and Master’s degree (M.M.) from Rice university.
Home Life: Husband Matt Lano, who plays the bassoon, and a pet snake named Chloe.
Any fun hobbies? I like to run and have run the Chicago marathon 6 times.
Why the French horn? My parents told me I had to be in band. Mom used to play the French horn. It sounded pretty and we had one sitting around the house, so I might as well have played that!
What kind of instrument do you play? Ricco Kühn
How often do you practice? About 2-4 hours per day
Who are some of your favorite French horn players? Radovan Vlatković – I love his sound, how smoothly he plays and how musical he is. James Sommerville, William VerMeulen (Rice University also 1st horn of Houston Symphony) The Chicago Symphony horn section! Sarah Willis, Low horn with the Berliner Philharmoniker – definitely a huge inspiration.
With what other ensembles have you played? I’m Principal Horn with the West Michigan Symphony, 3rd horn at the Britt Festival in Jacksonville, OR and I play with the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra. In Chicago, I sub with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Lyric Opera, Grant Park Orchestra and have also subbed with the Cincinnati and Milwaukee Symphonies.
What’s the best thing about performing in front of an audience? I want to play my best. Each time I perform a piece, I learn a little more about it. I hope to learn more about the other parts to see the big picture.
I hope the audience is moved in some way. I want the orchestra to get the emotional content of the music and for the audience to feel an emotional connection to the orchestra and to the music.
Being in an orchestra – being able to recreate these great masterpieces. It’s so rewarding!
Where are some great places to play outside of Columbus: Symphony Hall in Boston or Pritzker Pavillion in Millennium Park, Chicago
Any memorable performances? Playing principal on Mahler’s 9th with Esa-Pekka Salonen conducting the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, Orchestra Hall.
COLUMBUS SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Year joined the CSO: 2013, Subbed for two years prior.
What brought you to Columbus? I’ve been Freelancing in Chicago for 6 years now. A couple of years ago, Adam (Koch) called me to play a gig in Cleveland, which was right before Columbus Symphony Orchestra Sub auditions. He told me I should take the audition, and I have been coming out a lot since then.
Ohio Theatre or Southern Theatre? Ohio Theatre
What should people in Columbus know about the Columbus Symphony Orchestra? We are really lucky to have such a great orchestra. Columbus does far more in terms of a meaty, classical repertoire during the year than some other orchestras of its size. Such a great variety and we have a huge hall, too, so there are plenty of seats!
What do you say to people who don’t think they like classical music? I’d offer up some suggestions or suggest they hear a live performance just to get a full sampling of it. If you find a piece or a composer who really resonates with you, then work your way out from there. There’s such a huge variety to the classical repertoire, I think everyone could find something to love about it.
Who are your favorite composers? Mozart, Brahms
What’s your favorite musical Era: Romantic
Favorite show off piece for the French horn: Mozart Horn concertos, Former professor James Sommerville plays so expressively, so musically – he taught me how to play the Mozart concertos. “No – you CAN’T do it that way. Do it THIS way…”
What French horn music should I have in my music library? Till Eulenspiegel, Don Juan by Strauss
OK – GOTTA ASK!
Igor Stravinsky – Rite of spring: Genius? Or just plain weird? Genius!
I don’t know, but I might end up being outnumbered on that last question!
Special thanks to Erin for the use of her pictures for this post.
Come back tomorrow to meet Adam Koch!