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RPO Announces Soloist and Repertoire Change

Rochester, N.Y., March 30, 2006 – The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra announced today that Principal Cellist Stefan Reuss (The Clara and Edwin Strasenburgh Chair) has withdrawn from his scheduled solo appearances on April 20 & 22, 2006. Mr. Reuss was recently released from the hospital and is now home recuperating from a severe bout of pneumonia. He will be taking some time to rest and regain his strength.

Concertmaster Juliana Athayde (The Caroline W. Gannett & Clayla Ward Chair) will step into the soloist’s role and perform Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E minor. The rest of the program remains the same, with Michael Daugherty’s Red Cape Tango and Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 3, all under the direction of conductor Daniel Hege.

RPO Music Director Christopher Seaman said: “We were all looking forward to Stefan’s performance, and are disappointed that he is unable to perform the concerto this spring. Of course his health is the most important thing to all of us, and we wish him the best for his recovery. We’re fortunate that our talented new concertmaster Juliana Athayde is able to perform her first concerto with the orchestra instead – something we hadn’t been able to plan for this season due to the timing of her appointment. I’m sure everyone will enjoy her performance of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto, which the Orchestra hasn’t performed in a number of years.”

Ticketholders may call the RPO Box Office at 454-2100 with any questions they have about the substitution.

Juliana Athayde joined the RPO as concertmaster in October 2006. She previously served as concertmaster of the Canton and Plymouth Symphonies, and for the past five years, she has been a member of Michael Stern’s IRIS Chamber Orchestra in Memphis. Ms. Athayde earned a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Michigan, where she was a student of Paul Kantor. She went on to earn a Master of Music degree at the Cleveland Institute of Music. In the spring of 2005, Ms. Athayde became the first and only student to graduate from The Concertmaster Academy, a brand new program at CIM. Under the direction of Cleveland Orchestra concertmaster William Preucil, the program is designed to prepare the most qualified students for a career as concertmaster of a major symphony orchestra.

Tickets for this performance are $22-$52, available from the RPO Box Office, online at and at all Wegmans Video Departments. The Philharmonics Series is sponsored by Eastman Kodak Company and Bausch & Lomb. Juliana Athayde’s performance is made possible by the Jon L. and Katherine T. Schumacher Orchestra Musician Soloist Fund.