Where were you born? I was born in Hartford, Connecticut.
What piece of music could you play over and over again? Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring.
What’s your favorite Philadelphia restaurant? The best meal of my life was several years ago at Le Bec Fin. I still think about that experience to this day. It was very sad when they closed.
Tell us about your instrument. I’m very fortunate to play on a beautiful violin by Francesco Ruggieri made in 1682. It once belonged to Albert Barnes of the Barnes Foundation, who owned it from 1916 until his death in 1951. After his death it was donated to the Orchestra.
What’s in your instrument case? Two bows, a shoulder rest, extra strings, rosin, pencils, handkerchiefs, and nail clippers.
If you could ask one composer one question what would it be? I would ask Bach how he managed his time. With such a huge family and numerous professional obligations, it’s truly astonishing how he was able to compose some of the greatest music ever conceived.
What piece of music never fails to move you? Strauss’s Four Last Songs.
When did you join the Orchestra? In 2007.
Do you play any other instruments? No, but I have some serious cello envy. After the violin it’s been my favorite instrument since I was a kid.
What’s your favorite type of food? My father was Italian so I grew up on risotto and fresh pasta. It’s the ultimate comfort food for me.
What books are on your nightstand? Before bed I tend to read baking cookbooks. I’m always on the lookout for new techniques or flavor combinations.
Do you speak any other languages? No.
Do you follow any blogs? David Lebovitz is a charming writer who used to work as a pastry chef. As an American living in Paris he shares the wonderful and sometimes quirky things about living in France.
Do you have any hobbies? Baking. I’m very popular around here.
Is there a piece of music that isn’t in the standard orchestral repertoire that should be? Prokofiev’s Scythian Suite.
What’s the last recording you purchased? CD or download? Otto Klemperer’s complete Brahms recordings. I’m old school so I listen to CDs and LPs for classical recordings.
What’s on your iPod? Electronic and indie pop music. It’s great for exercising and driving.
When was the first time you heard The Philadelphia Orchestra? My mother grew up going to Philadelphia Orchestra concerts quite often, so we listened to a lot of recordings when I was young.
Other than Verizon Hall, where is your favorite place to perform? Carnegie Hall and the Musikverein in Vienna. Both places are magical.
Photo: Jessica Griffin