In Tuesday’s (4/5) Washington Post, Monica Hesse writes, “In the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, everybody is in love with everybody else. ‘There have to be, what, seven of us?’ says Amanda Gates Armstrong”—the assistant concertmaster, who is married to Vahn Armstrong, the orchestra’s concertmaster. “‘No, there are more,’ Patti Ferrell Carlson says. ‘Let’s see. The Bishops. The Boyers. The Aguirres. The Whites.’ … The principal flutist is married to the principal percussionist. The assistant principal second violin is married to the principal trumpet player. The acting assistant principal cellist married one of the bass players a few years ago… In fact, in an orchestra made up of 48 core players, 18 of them are married to each other. Nine couples. … If you count VSO’s non-full-time musicians, the percentage goes higher. The music director, JoAnn Falletta, is married to a substitute clarinet player. It’s very all-in-the-family. … Whether the Virginia Symphony Orchestra is a happy place because everyone is married to each other, or everyone is married to each other because it is a happy place is up for debate.”

Posted April 7, 2011