MEET OUR MUSICIANS
Eric Abis holds degrees in Music Education and Computer Engineering; he currently works as a Software Engineer. A former Army Bandsman, Eric defended our country with a Tuba. Since then, he has performed with many community bands on, in order of frequency, Euphonium, Tuba, Bassoon, and Clarinet. Eric has also branched out into Musical Theater; singing, dancing and directing.
In 2010, Eric was nominated by the New Hampshire Theater Awards for Best Musical Director in a Community Musical. Seeking even greater challenges, Eric is currently studying Cello with Gary Hodges, Principal Cellist of the NH Philharmonic.
Matt Benston is an accomplished trumpeter and resident of Lowell. Before becoming a member of the LPO in 2009, he was active in performance at UMASS Lowell.
Dennis Geary, Board Member, played both trumpet and French horn in high school. After serving in the Navy, he settled in Tyngsboro with his wife and children. Dennis enjoys playing with the LPO, as each season he never knows whether he will play trumpet or horn - or both!
Photo by Kevin Harkins
Patricia (Milner) Gilmore, Board Member, has been in the LPO since 2005, playing clarinet. Also a former co-president and secretary of the group, she initiated the LPO's annual summer concert at Shedd Park Pavilion as well as the annual Holiday Concert. In addition to performing in the LPO, she was active in the College of the Holy Cross Chamber Orchestra, Indian Hill Clarinet Choir and the Warwick Symphony Orchestra. Her supportive parents encouraged her musical development and are still her biggest fans today. Patty is the very proud mother of two young boys.
Photo by Adrien Bisson.
Jack Kick has been playing violin with the LPO since 1991. Outside of the orchestra, he conducts geophysical and geological investigations at the business he founded, Kick Geoexploration.
In some of his spare time Jack is a runner - he runs races but especially likes to run trails. He is so dedicated to trail running that he'll go despite rain, snow or sleet and the occasional black bear.
Kathy (Jenkins) Weal, Board Member, and a resident of Dracut, has been a proud member of the Lowell Philharmonic Orchestra for nearly 30 years. She also coordinates and manages the LPO's annual Jeanne Selander Memorial Concerto Competition.
In addition to playing principal second violin with the LPO, she founded and directed her church's hand bell choir. Before moving to the area, she was a member of the Quincy Symphony Orchestra.
Steve McCarron, Co-President, has been a trombonist and active board member since 2000. In addition to his involvement here, he is also a frequent volunteer at Lowell Telecommunications Corporation (LTC).
Charles Needles, Board Member, is a retired Air Force pilot and is an Engineering Program Mgr. for a defense contractor, but his passion has always been music. He has been playing the cello for 5 yrs. under the direction of Pr. Arkady Beletsky.
Prior to joining the LPO, he performed with the Westford Chorus for 10 yrs. as a base/baritone in numerous classical, jazz and pops concerts and stage performances. He sang “Old Man River” in Showboat and starred as “Lt. Zuniga” in the opera Carmen.
John Saxelby rows on the Charles by morning, works by day, and French horns by night. A resident of Lowell, John first became a member of our brass section in 2003. Growing up, he played trumpet until taking up French horn in the 11th grade.
Charlie Tidd, a resident of North Reading, MA, has played trombone with the LPO since 2010, with a short hiatus in 2012 - 2013 to get married. When not playing trombone, he is a Master Scheduler at GE.
Charlie has an MBA from Rice University ('09) and a Bachelor of Music from Western Connecticut State University ('97). He has previously played with the Fort Bend (TX) Symphony Orchestra, the Danbury (CT) Symphony Orchestra, the Danbury Brass Band, and the Danbury Concert Orchestra.
Paula Bingham has been playing flute with the LPO since 1999 and is a software engineer by day. A resident of Westford, she is also a member of Symphony Pro Musica and performs with other area groups.
Jeannette Clemons, Board Member, has played in the LPO since 2006 and has studied oboe with Margaret Herlehy since 2007. She and her husband, a bassoonist, live in Southern NH with three Standard Poodles.
Shawn Foti, Vice President, joined the LPO in 2012 and served as Co-President & President during 2013 - 2017. A native of Rhode Island, Shawn has played horn in various ensembles since the age of twelve.
During college he performed with the University of Vermont Orchestra where he studied horn with Alan Parshley, and the Northeastern University Orchestra.
In 2015 he played at Boston Symphony Hall as part of the BSO "Onstage at Symphony" program. He currently studies with James Mosher of the New England Conservatory of Music.
Photo by Boston Symphony Orchestra
Jen Kramer joined the LPO in 2014 playing flute and piccolo. By day, she is a Lecturer in Digital Media for Harvard University Extension School. She plays with the Metropolitan Flute Orchestra and Willow Flute Ensemble, as well as a myriad of other small ensembles.
Bobbie Kydd is a musician, dancer, engineer, wife and dog mother. She is currently a Principal Software Engineer at MKS Instruments in Woburn, MA.
She began studying the violin in group lessons provided by the Quincy (MA) Public School System. As a teen she learned chords on the guitar, to accompany her singing.
In 1971 she started taking many dance classes at the Joy of Movement Center. As a student at UMass, she played a few semesters with the (UMBCO) Chamber Orchestra. After a brief hiatus she returned to the UMBCO Chamber Orchestra for a season. Bobbie married Ed Kydd, a guitar instructor and moved to NH. She played for sixteen years in the Nashua Chamber Orchestra. After joining in the fall of 2015 she anticipates playing many concerts with the LPO.
Photo by Kevin Harkins
Kimball Murray is a Shirley resident who hails from a very musical family. He joined the LPO in 2011 after first picking up the cello in 2010. Originally a clarinetist, Kimball was inspired to get back into performance after attending an orchestral concert a couple years ago.
With parents who are professional musicians themselves, he is happy to have the opportunity to play in the LPO. During the day, Kimball is a software engineer. He also is a licensed pilot.
Annalisa Peterson is a Lowell resident who has been playing French horn with the LPO for since 2000. For her profession, she teaches high school math and physics. She alsoperforms with several other groups in the area.
Ward Rosenberry, a member of the violin section since 1995, served as President from 2008-2010. During the day, Ward is a technical writer at his own information design company, Rosenberry Associates.
Alan Stern, a computational scientist at Harvard's Rowland Institute, has been with the orchestra since 2004. His membership started when he and Valerie Taylor met again at a Harvard College reunion. He has been playing trumpet with the LPO ever since.
Jen Winiarski, Board Member, is a resident of Dracut and has been a member of the LPO since 2010. She earned her Bachelor of Music at UMass Lowell in 2007. Since starting violin at the age of seven, Jennifer has received musical training from Robin Mallory, Heidi Braun-Hill, and Elliott Markow.
Currently, Jennifer is working at an independent pharmacy. She studied music while studying to earn her pharmacy license.
Photo by Kevin Harkins.
Jerry Vabulas has played clarinet in the Lowell Philharmonic Orchestra since 2014. A native of New York, he has been involved in music since taking up the instrument in grade school. After a life combining a love of music and the pursuit of business opportunities in the technology field, he and his wife moved to Massachusetts four years ago to be near their three young grandchildren.
A resident of Acton, he has performed with many local musical groups, including among others the Carlisle Chamber Orchestra, Symphony Pro Musica, the Concord Orchestra, and Opera51.