Dr. Nancia D'Alimonte, Music Director and Conductor, Loudoun Symphony Orchestra
Dr. Nancia D’Alimonte, who continues with the Loudoun Symphony Orchestra for its 2019-2020 season, is also founder, Music Director and Conductor of NIH Philharmonia, Bethesda, MD, which is beginning its fifteenth season this year. Additionally, she directs The Kennedy Center’s popular annual Messiah Sing-along. For three years, she was the Artistic Director of The Arlington Chorale, transforming the group into a vibrant ensemble. From 2005-2015 she directed The George Washington University Orchestra. Throughout her career D’Alimonte has captivated audiences with her high energy, command and charisma. An internationally recognized orchestral conductor, her guest conducting appearances have taken her from this country (New York, Colorado, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Tennessee) to Russia (Academic State Ballet Theatre in St. Petersburg), and from Romania (Mihail Jora Bacau Philharmonic) to Moldova (National Chamber Orchestra, Chisinau).
Gifted in innovative program conception and design and a born educator and communicator, Dr. D’Alimonte enthralls her audiences with lively historical commentary and musical anecdotes. Musicians who play under her baton have been equally enthusiastic, praising her musicality, breadth of knowledge, rhythmic clarity and expressive hands.
Known for the versatility of her talents, Nancia D’Alimonte has been an education programs consultant for the National Philharmonic at The Music Center at Strathmore for 13 years. For this, she crafted multimedia productions performed annually for 10,000 Montgomery County second graders. She is a frequent adjudicator for Festivals of Music and a sought-after guest clinician.
Dr. D’Alimonte holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts in orchestral conducting from the prestigious Eastman School of Music, Rochester, NY. A former professional horn player, she earned a Master of Music in horn performance from Ithaca College and studied horn at the Royal Flemish Music Conservatory in Brussels, Belgium. Nancia D’Alimonte lives in Falls Church, VA with her husband Giancarlo and their standard poodle Wolfgang.
Joseph Choi, LSYO Music Director and Conductor
Originally from South Korea, for over 32 years Mr. Joseph Choi has lived in the United States. After conducting the Loudoun Symphony Youth Orchestra Concert Orchestra for two seasons, Mr. Choi has been appointed as Music Director and Conductor of the Loudoun Symphony Youth Orchestra program and conducts both the Symphony and Concert Orchestras.
Mr. Choi also serves as the Music Director and Conductor of the Maryland Chamber Orchestra in Hagerstown, Maryland and is currently finishing his DMA (Doctor of Musical Arts) in Orchestral Conducting at the Shenandoah Conservatory of Music in Winchester, VA.
Mr. Choi has served as Associate Conductor of Owensboro Symphony (KY) and Assistant Conductor of Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra (IN) and Asheville Symphony (NC). Maestro Choi has also served as Music Director of Owensboro Symphony Youth Orchestra (KY), Evansville Philharmonic Youth Orchestra (IN) and Pocono Youth Symphony (PA). Mr. Choi has also conducted Phoenix Symphony (AZ), East Texas Symphony (TX), Astoria Symphony (NYC), Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic (Czech Republic), Beethoven Chamber Orchestra (Czech Republic), Scottsdale Symphony (AZ), University of Maryland Symphony (MD), Hartt Symphony Orchestra (CT), and Maranatha Chamber Orchestra.
In the past, Mr. Choi has also participated in many international conducting competitions such as Pedrotti International Conducting Competition (Italy), Besançon International Conducting Competition (France), Fundação Oriente International Conducting Competition (Semifinalist), and as winner of the Macon International Conducting Institute in Georgia. Due to his winning title, he was invited to attend St. Petersburg (Russia) Conducting Workshop to study with Yuri Temirkanov and conduct the world-famous St. Petersburg “Congress” Orchestra (Russia).
Mr. Choi is equally comfortable with the band and choral world where he continues to attend US Army Band Conducting workshops annually in Washington DC working with US “Pershing’s Own” Army Band. In 2003, he was named one of two finalists with US Army Band Conducting Auditions. Also that same year, he was named one of 7 finalists for the US Air Force Band Conducting Audition.
He has served as Assistant Conductor and Doctoral Graduate Choral Conducting major at the University of Maryland and as a tenor soloist with University of Maryland Chorus and the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra. He was a paid tenor section member with Baltimore Choral Arts & Baltimore Symphony Chorus for the Beethoven Symphony No. 9 performance with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, and as Tenor Section member with CONCORA (Professional Chorus in CT) at the Bard Festival and with American Symphony Orchestra in NYC. Along with his wife Angela, and their son Nathaniel, he resides in Falling Waters, West Virginia.
Ethan Lawrence, Conductor of Loudoun Symphony Youth Orchestra Prelude Strings Ensemble
Mr. Ethan Lawrence is a teacher in Loudoun County Public Schools. During his first five years at John Champe High School, the orchestra program grew from thirty-five to more than ninety students. Also, during this time, the John Champe Chamber Ensemble performed for the Ashburn Chapter of the American Legion’s “Loudoun Salute,” at various nursing homes across the county, and alongside the Lebanon Valley College Orchestra. The students also performed Max Bruch’s “Romanze,” Op. 85, the JS Bach Violin Concerto in E Major – BWV 1042, the Aleksandr Glazunov Saxophone Concerto Op. 109, and the Edvard Grieg Piano Concerto in A Minor Op. 16.
Mr. Lawrence has been playing bass for 18 years and is actively involved with the Bass Coalition. He maintains a small private studio of bassists who actively audition and perform with the North Central Virginia Regional Orchestras and the Loudoun County All County Orchestras.
Mr. Lawrence earned his undergraduate degree in Music Education from Shenandoah Conservatory of Music in Winchester, Virginia and is currently working on his Masters in Music Education at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. He has also had the opportunity to study conducting with both Jan Wagner of Shenandoah Conservatory and Foster Beyers of James Madison University. Ethan has also had articles published in both state and national music education magazines promoting the necessity of overlapping popular music with traditional orchestral music in the public school classroom.
Karen Knobloch, Executive Director
For the past seven years, Karen has served as a self-employed consultant and has supported several national trade associations and arts organizations by helping them improve marketing and build their revenue streams.
Before starting her business, Karen served for 13 years as a senior executive for the National Retail Federation (NRF) with the last seven years in the role of senior vice president, member services. Prior to joining NRF, she held a number of roles including federal lobbyist, political action committee manager, and director of membership for the Food Marketing Institute.
Karen earned her M.S. in Public Relations from the American University and B.A. in Communication Arts from James Madison University.
Michael Rohrer, Accounting
Michael has been principal bass for the Loudoun Symphony since it began in 1991, and is also principal bass with the Reston-based Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and the self-conducted Ars Nova Chamber Orchestra. In addition to those groups, he plays regularly with Washington Sinfonietta and the Symphony of the Potomac An active freelancer and chamber music player, he has performed with numerous other ensembles over the years.
Michael is also the bassist for The Bitter Liberals, a 5-piece band performing all-original music, and likes to sit in with other bands in the area when he gets the chance.
In addition to his musical activities, he served for several years as board member, Treasurer and Executive Director of the Loudoun Symphony, and continues to work as LSO’s bookkeeper and accounting manager.