Since its founding in 1956, Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra has impacted the lives of thousands of young musicians. Many of those young people pursued music as a career and have become professional musicians who play around the world. We are excited to share stories of some of these alumni with you in our 2018 Alumni Play On series.
Stephanie Mortimore is the Principal Piccoloist with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in New York City. She also teaches privately and in masterclass settings.
Stephanie, a 1989 graduate, was in MYSO for two years and participated in theory classes. In addition to making lifelong friends, her MYSO experience determined the course of her future. Prior to joining MYSO, Stephanie wanted to be a psychologist. Her school did not have an orchestra, so MYSO provided her first taste of what it might be like to be a professional musician. Her experience in MYSO was pivotal in her decision to pursue music as a career.
Recently, Stephanie coached the flutists of the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America. She says, “Their enthusiasm for learning really reminded me of myself at their age. There is something so incredible about watching a young person’s reaction to playing Shostakovich 5 for the first time. MYSO was that for me.”
Stephanie has held her position since 2000. She remembers, “The day I won the Met audition was the most incredible day of my professional life. There were 13 people on the audition panel, and I’ll never forget the whirlwind of excitement I had meeting them all knowing they would be my future colleagues.”