Brian Edward Dowdy

A diversely experienced conductor, performer and educator, Brian Edward Dowdy begins his first season as Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra in the 2017-18 season. He is also the newly appointed Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the St. Cloud Symphony Orchestra and former Artistic Director of the Mississippi Valley Orchestra. In May 2017, Dowdy completed his doctoral studies at the University of Minnesota, where he was a James Sample Fellow, director of Campus Orchestras and Summer Orchestra conductor.

by Joseph Dolson on June 20, 2017

Catherine Himmerich

Catherine started violin lessons in the Carroll College Suzuki program in Waukesha, Wisconsin, then moved on to the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music in Milwaukee and the Music Institute of Chicago. She has both her bachelors degree, summa cum laude in Violin Performance, and her masters degree from the University of Minnesota. Her primary teachers have included Roger Frisch, Roland Vamos, J. Patrick Rafferty, and Korey Konkol.

Catherine joined the MPO in 2012 and was the soloist on Tzigane by Maurice Ravel in 2016. Highlights from her current performance season range from playing violin with the rock band Hanson at the State Theater to presenting a Black History Month recital at the All God’s Children Thursday’s Table.

Also a pianist, Catherine has performed George Gershwin’s Concerto in F in Milwaukee and was the pianist for the Brahms Horn Trio in E♭ major at the Aberdeen, Scotland International Youth Festival representing the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra.

Catherine currently teaches violin lessons at City of Lakes Waldorf School and at her home studio in a Northeast Minneapolis artist loft. After making a personal commitment to include more music by black composers in her teaching, some of her students recently performed works by Ignatius Sancho and Juwon Ogungbe.

Catherine and her duo partner, MPO stand partner Joe Dolson, have worked extensively on sets of violin duos by Bartok, Hindemith, Leclair, and the Cure and are currently tackling the formidable Sonata for Two Violins by Eugene Ysaye. When not performing or teaching violin, Catherine is usually listening to hardcore punk rock.

by Joseph Dolson on May 5, 2016

Joe Burling

by Joseph Dolson on May 5, 2016

Martha Hoschmiller

Martha joined the orchestra in September 2000. Over the yeas, she has volunteered for several small projects with the orchestra (you may recognize her as part of the cello ensemble that has played at our Salon fundraiser for the past several years), but this is her first time on the board. Martha has a BA in mathematics from Grinnell College. She has worked in the utility industry since 1999 and currently focuses on federal electric utility regulation.

by Joseph Dolson on May 5, 2016

Sarah Wolf

by Joseph Dolson on July 15, 2017

Doug Opel

Doug joined the MPO Board in 2015 as an At-Large member and now serves primarily as Operations Director.

He is an active composer whose works have been commissioned and otherwise sought after and performed by the National Young Arts Foundation, Zeitgeist, Ricochet Duo, The Bridge Chamber Music Festival, the Chautauqua Instituion Piano Competition, cellist Jeffrey Zeigler, the Atlantic Chamber Ensemble, MATA, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic, PUBLIQuartet, American Modern Ensemble, Nautilus Music-Theater, pianist Nicola Melville, Vox Novus, Duo Petrof and Keys to the Future. He is a recipient of the Aaron Copland Award and winner of Definiens’ Composition Competition Competition.

by Joseph Dolson on July 2, 2016

Joe Dolson

Joe is the former concertmaster of the MPO, and has been playing with the orchestra since the fall of 2000. Professionally, Joe helps organizations make their websites usable by people with disabilities. He’s a core developer for the open source content management system WordPress, and works to promote accessible site building and design using WordPress. He teaches a course at on Accessibility for WordPress and works with the WordPress Accessibility team to help make WordPress and resources more accessible.

Joe has been working in marketing and web development since 2001, providing web consulting and development services to clients in the U.S. and in Europe. Joe writes and speaks regularly on important topics in accessible web development and web standards. Keep up with Joe at Joe Dolson Accessible Web Design or follow Joe on Twitter.

by Joseph Dolson on July 2, 2016

Dr. Brian Singletary

Dr. Brian Singletary joined the MPO’s first violin section during their 2008 – 09 Season and as has played in the orchestra since then until the 2017 – 18 Season. Due to scheduling conflicts, Brian is unable to play with the orchestra at this time but will serve the MPO and its Mission in another capacity by graciously accepting an opportunity to join the MPO Board. Brian brings
with him a background in music, Associate Clinical Professor, and Small Business Owner.

In addition to playing the violin, Brian plays the cello, piano, and pipe organ. He enjoys playing Chamber Music as well as Solo works for the violin, piano, and pipe organ. Brian studied music and dentistry at the U of Pittsburgh, U of Rochester, Yale School of Music, and U of Minnesota. His teachers include Marjorie Steen, Henrietta Doby Freeman, Kyprus Marcu, Magarite DesLippe Dean, Lily Freeman, Pedro Pinyol, Erick Freeman, Hrant Parsamian, and Dr. Dean Billmyer. He looks forward to working with all of the MPO Board Members as they continue to develop and provide exceptional musical experiences for all of our Minnesota Communities and beyond.

by Joseph Dolson on November 3, 2018

Tom Cox

by Joseph Dolson on February 10, 2019

Brian Hadley

Brian serves as the Music Librarian where he serves on the MPO’s Programming Committee, communicates with music publishers to rent or purchase performance pieces, manages the music library, distributes and collects the music to and from the musicians, and communicates issues relating to the Music Library with the Music Director and Board of Directors.

Brian Hadley joined the MPO in 1998 as second bassoon and has been principal bassoon since 2000. He has served on the Board of Directors from 2003 to 2011 in many different roles including personnel manager, ensemble coordinator, Vice President and President. In addition to the MPO, Brian plays with other local community music groups including Kenwood Symphony Orchestra and the Praise Team at All Gods’ Children Metropolitan Church in Minneapolis.

Brian has taught music, band and orchestra in the Minneapolis Public School district since 1997 and currently teaches band at Pillsbury Elementary and Olson Middle School. Brian has also been performing, teaching or judging in the marching band/drum corps/color guard activity for almost 30 years. Brian currently judges for the North Star Color Guard Circuit and has served as Chief Judge for the NSC from 2005 – 2011 and served on the board of directors from 2000 – 2011.

Brian lives in Richfield with his husband Matt and two cats Roger and Stewie.

by Joseph Dolson on May 5, 2016