“She didn’t plan it. She didn’t expect it,” writes Kristin Tillotson in Thursday’s (2/4) Star Tribune (Minneapolis). “But Gina DiBello’s audition with the Minnesota Orchestra represented a big turning point in her career—and she doesn’t mean getting the job. ‘I loved the idea of being principal second violin, but I didn’t know anything about the orchestra and had never been to Minnesota, so I saw it as an experiment,’ said DiBello, 27, who had spent three previous seasons with the Detroit Symphony after studying at Juilliard. In the middle of her chosen piece, Tchaikovsky’s demanding violin concerto, ‘I had a breakthrough. For the first time I felt completely comfortable playing in a high-pressure situation.’ Whether it was kismet or simply the moment that DiBello’s confidence gears were supposed to mesh after a lifetime of practice, that audition earned her the top spot in the orchestra’s second violin section. This week she makes her solo debut at Orchestra Hall for three nights in a row, performing Mozart’s Third Violin Concerto with the orchestra’s former music director, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, conducting. … One of only six members under 30, she is also the orchestra’s youngest section principal, a role requiring respect from peers for both her musicianship and ability to lead.”

Posted February 5, 2010