Player Spotlight ~ Lisa Ferrigno ~ Concertmaster,
Brevard Symphony and Walt Disney World Orchestras

Opus 707, “Leduc” Guarneri del Gesù violin, 2010

“When I first tried Opus 707, "Leduc" Guarneri del Gesù, I was struck not only by its rich, silvery tone but by how it just felt right for me. Its size, weight, and tactile smoothness make it a perfect fit for me, but more importantly, it responds instantly and beautifully to the touch of my bow. I never have to struggle to make a gorgeous sound on this violin. I've been playing it for over a year, and every day it becomes more open and more lush. I'm always happy to open my case and see it waiting for me, my new partner in music!”

Lisa FerrignoLisa Ferrigno doesn't remember a time when she did not love the violin. She grew up in a house filled with music. Her mother is a flutist who played Heifetz LP's on the hi-fi. Her father is a jazz pianist and long-time friend of the late violinist William dePasquale, of the Philadelphia Orchestra.

An older cousin gave Lisa her 3/4 size violin when she outgrew it, but Lisa was too little for it, and had to wait to grow into it, at age 9, before she started lessons. For years, she regularly snuck into the closet where the violin was kept to see if she was big enough yet.

Lisa studied with Robert Eshbach and Eric Rosenblith at New England Conservatory Prep from 1979 - 1984. She holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music, where she studied with Zvi Zeitlin, Sylvia Rosenberg and Charles Castleman and from Florida State University, where she studied with Eliot Chapo.

As a student at NEC, Lisa knew of Cox instruments for many years, but it was not until 2008, when she moved to Brattleboro part time, that she had an opportunity to try them. She became one of the numerous local players who “play in” new instruments as they are set up, to evaluate and test drive them before they are ready to show, and she gradually became more and more taken with their sound. In 2010, Lisa was the violinist who played the 5 instruments showed at the first Wine and Violin Tasting event at Next Stage Arts in Putney Vermont. She had already settled on the #707 Leduc. Lisa visits from time to time to help evaluate new instruments in the shop.

In addition to her passion for music of all kinds, Lisa loves cats, kayaking, movies, scuba diving, hiking, and recently acquired a looper and began experimenting with improvisation. She and her husband Aaron Hilbun, an oboist, recently rescued a senior Dachshund named Edith, and they have three cats named Maggie, Chassis and Poko. Lisa and Aaron love to travel, and spent 7 years soloing with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Trujillo and the Orquesta Camara del Festival Internacional Bach in Perú during the summers. Her favorite city is Paris, and she loves New York too.

Dividing her time between Winter Park, Florida and Brattleboro, Vermont, Lisa is the concertmaster of the Brevard Symphony Orchestra in Melbourne, Florida and of the Walt Disney World Orchestra in Orlando, as well as solo violinist at Disney. She is an avid chamber musician, in both Florida and in New England, performing chamber music recitals throughout the year with colleagues in both regions. Lisa and her husband are enthusiastic about new music. Vermont composer Derrik Jordan has recently written a piece for them called Shapeshifter, for oboe, violin, double bass and steel drum, which requires the oboe and violin performers to double on steel drum.

Lisa maintains teaching studios in Vermont and in Florida, and presents workshops to young people in Florida. She is a veteran of commercial classical, pop, and jazz studio recording sessions. If that wasn't enough, she is also a contractor of music ensembles large and small for private, church, and corporate events in FL and NE. She subs with the Boston Pops and plays gigs of all kinds, including puppet shows and weddings. Read her blog at www.violincafe.net.

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