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Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts will be rededicated as Marian Anderson Hall, home of The Philadelphia Orchestra

Amy Oshiro-Morales

Musicians Behind the Scenes: Amy Oshiro-Morales

Posted by:  The Philadelphia Orchestra on November 29, 2022

Where were you born? I was born in Tacoma Park, MD.

What piece of music could you play over and over again? Anything by Richard Strauss.

What is your most treasured possession? My family, of course!

What’s your favorite Philadelphia restaurant? I have often found myself at Parc because they still serve after concerts and the menu is fantastic. 

Tell us about your instrument. I have many violins that I bring to work and rotate from week to week. My husband is an aspiring “collector” and is fascinated with the centuries of luthiers and the tonal differences among the various violin schools. I am his “tester”! 

What’s in your instrument case? The usual: two bows, rosin, extra pencils, extra mutes, shoulder rest, hair ties, violin cloth to wipe rosin dust, humidifiers, and tons of extra strings.

If you could ask one composer one question what would it be? J.S. Bach: Did it concern you that many passages in the solo sonatas and partitas would be quite awkward to play on the violin because it was not a keyboard instrument? 

What piece of music never fails to move you? “The Fairy Garden” from Maurice Ravel’s Mother Goose. It always makes me a bit misty onstage. 

When did you join the Orchestra? January 2008.

Do you play any other instruments? No. 

What’s your favorite type of food? Asian cuisine (I grew up in America but was raised in a Japanese household).

What books are on your nightstand? Hard copy or e-reader? Hard copies. Books by Malcolm Gladwell and David Sedaris are usually hits with me. 
Do you speak any other languages? Japanese. I can get around Japan with it but I can’t converse like a college grad! 

Do you follow any blogs? No blogs but I love listening to podcasts like Radiolab, This American Life, Freakonomics, Revisionist History, Story Corps, The Moth, etc. I listen to them while I do household chores.

Do you have a favorite movie? I have always loved When Harry Met Sally because it is a feel-good movie about the evolution of two people, which just makes sense to me.

Is there a piece of music that isn’t in the standard orchestral repertoire that should be? Dvořák’s Violin Concerto. It’s never programmed as often as the other Romantic concertos and it has a gorgeous slow movement. Dvořák wrote the best melodies!

What’s the last recording you purchased? CD or download? I haven’t bought any music in a while because I listen to pieces on YouTube. It’s become such a great resource for musicians.

Other than Verizon Hall, where is your favorite place to perform? I absolutely love playing onstage at Carnegie Hall! Every time we perform there, I hear details in the music that I don’t hear so readily elsewhere. The Musikverein in Vienna is my favorite in Europe. The best concert halls not only sound superb but feel magical at the same time. 

Photo: Jessica Griffin

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