Composers and Soloists

Over the years, the Susquehanna Symphony Orchestra has been fortunate to collaborate with many talented composers and soloists. Below are the biographies of some of those guests:


  • Neil Anderson-Himmelspach

The last few years leading up to the writing of this piece I spent battling an internal war with my mind, body, and spirit. This battle left me having to learn a new way to compose. I had to begin by writing … READ MORE >>

  • Zach Beever

A recent graduate of Harford Community College, he will be pursuing his undergraduate degree in composition at Boston Conservatory beginning in Fall 2013, with an eye toward a doctorate in order to …READ MORE >>

  • Daniel Dorff

Daniel Dorff’s music for flute and piccolo has entered the standard repertoire and is frequently performed and recorded worldwide. He has composed 7 commissioned works for the Philadelphia Orchestra’s education department, and … READ MORE >>

  • David Finko

In the early 1950s, the Soviet Union started active preparations for WWIII against the USA and NATO, and young talented men were pressed into service in the national army and navy. David Finko—the only son of a naval architect …READ MORE >>

  • Brian Folus

Principal Bassist for the Susquehanna Symphony Orchestra, has also been a frequent guest conductor of the SSO. He received his Bachelor of Music Education from Towson University and …READ MORE >>

  • Amanda Harberg

A native of Philadelphia, the music of Amanda Harberg  has been widely commissioned and performed in the United States and abroad. Harberg’s music has been performed frequently in Lincoln Center, Carnegie’s Weill Hall, …READ MORE >>

  • Raymond Horton

Raymond Horton retired in 2014 after 45 years as Bass Trombonist of The Louisville Orchestra, having been a member since joining in 1971 at the age of 18. Besides playing on some 175 recorded orchestral works …READ MORE >>

  • James Lee III

James Lee III, born 1975 in St. Joseph, Michigan cites as his major composition teachers Michael Daugherty, William Bolcom, Bright Sheng, Betsy Jolas, Susan Botti, Erik Santos and James Aikman. As a composition fellow at …READ MORE >>

  • Don Raff

Bass Trombonist for the Susquehanna Symphony Orchestra, has always been fascinated by the art of creating colorful music sounds through the use of orchestration. His favorite composers all have been …READ MORE >>

  • Benny Russell

Born February 21, 1958 in Baltimore, Maryland, Russell started clarinet lessons at age 7 under the instruction of Mr. James H. Holliman. At 12 he began playing tenor. And by the time he was 15, sitting in with the Morgan State bands … READ MORE >>

  • Kile Smith

The music of Kile Smith is praised by critics and audiences for its emotional power, direct appeal, and strong voice. Gramophone hailed the “sparkling beauty” of his music, calling …READ MORE >>

  • Gwyneth Walker

Widely performed throughout the country, the music of American composer Gwyneth Walker is beloved by performers and audiences alike for its energy, beauty, reverence, drama, and … READ MORE >>

Guest Conductors

  • Douglas M. Beach

Douglas M. Beach is a recent graduate of Messiah College where he studied Music with a focus in Composition. During his time there,  … READ MORE >>


  • Carolyn Black-Sotir, soprano

Carolyn Black-Sotir is a gifted and versatile artist who enjoys one of the most fascinating and diverse careers imaginable. Few possess her breadth of experience, talent, and training. Whether it be as a singer, actress, writer, …READ MORE >>

  • Emmanuel Borowsky, violinist

​“He brought forth a celebration of fire and temperament, as well as immense sensitivity, wonderfully flowing chants and a pliant tone. He is a remarkable talent.” The German Heidelberg Rhein-Neckar Zeitung’s assessment of American violinist Emmanuel Borowsky has been echoed by …READ MORE >> 

  • Kevin Businsky, trumpet

Kevin Businsky has been playing the trumpet since he was 10 years old.  He was a fellow of the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Florida.  After an intensive three-year program of performance and training, NWS fellows emerge …READ MORE >> 

  • Washington Garcia, pianist

Washington García is an Ecuadorian-American pianist who began his musical studies at the age of six. Among his teachers have been Genoveva Granja, Toshko Stoyanov, Ann Schein, Yoheved Kaplinsky, and Julian Martin. Dr. García holds …READ MORE >>

  • Sheridan Kamberger Currie, viola

Sheridan Kamberger Currie is the principal violist of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. She has performed as chamber musician throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe, and has performed as soloist …READ MORE >>

  • Viktor Khodyko, viola

Viktor Khodyko has studied violin and viola since he was 6 years old. He graduated from the Belorussian State Conservatory, one of the most prestigious musical institutions  in the former Soviet Union. His teacher was a famous violinist, … READ MORE >>

  • Joel Weszka, clarinet

Clarinetist Joel Weszka is an active and distinguished performing artist, promoting classical and contemporary classical music in a variety of venues and musical contexts. At home in Romantic music as much as Avant-garde, … READ MORE >>

  • Barton Woomert, trumpet

Trumpeter Barton Woomert, the former Associate Principal Trumpet with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra for thirty-two years, is an active free-lance musician who performs regularly with …READ MORE >>

  • Steven Woomert, flugelhorn

Steven Woomert joined the Toronto Symphony Orchestra as Associate Principal Trumpet in the 2014– 2015 season. He was the winner of the 2013 International Trumpet Guild Orchestral Excerpts Competition while studying with …READ MORE >>