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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

Willa Finck

Musicians Behind the Scenes

Posted by:  The Philadelphia Orchestra on May 03, 2024

Where were you born? I was born in Kansas.

What piece of music could you play over and over again? So many pieces, but the first that comes to mind is Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht

What is your most treasured possession? My violins, for many reasons.

What’s your favorite Philadelphia restaurant? So far it’s Mawn! 
Tell us about your instrument. My dad, David Finck, made my violin. I regularly play one he made in 2020 and I absolutely love that instrument, but I also sometimes play one he made specifically for me back in 2013.

What’s in your instrument case? The usual suspects: rosin, strings, pencils, earplugs, and just for fun, one of those mini troll dolls.

What piece of music never fails to move you? Shostakovich’s Piano Quintet.

When did you join the Orchestra? In September 2023.

Do you play any other instruments? I attempt to play piano and to sing, but that’s definitely a work in progress.

What books are on your nightstand? I’ve got a good pile right now. The Hare by Melanie Finn, Indelicacy by Amina Cain, The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. Le Guin, and The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. 

Do you have any hobbies? Drawing, painting, reading, yoga, and taking care of my plants! 

Do you have a favorite movie? I’d say currently my favorite is Call Me by Your Name.

Is there a piece of music that isn’t in the standard orchestral repertoire that should be? Just more pieces by Benjamin Britten.

What’s the last recording you purchased? A Reckoning Bell by the Magic Lantern.

What’s on your iPod? I can’t say that I use an iPod anymore but some of my most listened to artists are Fleet Foxes, Sufjan Stevens, Punch Brothers, Erroll Garner, Janelle Monáe … the list could go on. 

When was the first time you heard The Philadelphia Orchestra? The day I won my audition last year I got to hear Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring! I grew up endlessly rewatching Fantasia though, so I’ve been hearing the Philadelphia Sound my whole life. 

Other than Verizon Hall, where is your favorite place to perform? Performing at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg this past fall on tour with the Orchestra was really incredible. 

Photo: Ethan Durell

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