‘Why we joined the union’

Volume 117, No. 3March, 2017

Samantha Gillogly

I joined Local 802 as part of a commitment to broaden my professional network in New York City. I am especially interested in meeting long-time union members whose successes and insights I can learn from, as well as members who are involved in classical music projects that challenge the traditional format and culture of classical performance. My first union gig since joining Local 802 was as a sub in the Philharmonia Orchestra of New York (PONY) at its sold-out 2016 concert of Berlioz’s “Symphonie Fantastique” under the direction of maestro Atsushi Yamada. A friend recommended me to PONY’s personnel manager. I am so grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of this special program. Not only did I get to work alongside outstanding players in the top of their field, but I had the chance to witness some innovative usage of multimedia performance techniques: rock concert-style lighting, robo-cam projections, and an art film made especially for the concert. It really showed a glimpse of what the future of classical music can be like! My musical goals in NYC include performing in chamber and orchestral concerts as well as playing for dance and musical theatre. As a Berklee grad, the music of film, television and videogame soundtracks are very close to my heart, so I would love to be able to play more of these through studio session work or in concert. I have experience in a number of genres outside of classical music, including Celtic and Middle Eastern styles, so I’m always looking for more opportunities to utilize those skills as well. Eventually, I would like to start my own string chamber orchestra. In recent times, I have become more deeply interested in exploring new contexts for instrumental music as a vehicle for social change. As an extension of my teaching practice, I would like to start a nonprofit string education program for refugee and other immigrant children residing in NYC, as a means of providing a positive and uplifting activity that can help them to more easily cope with the difficulties of adjusting to life in a new country. My primary instrument is violin, and I am equally proficient in viola as well.