Andy Balio - Principal Trumpet
I always knew I would be some sort of artist. Still, when I chose to pursue a career as a musician, that was a big surprise to not only my parents but myself. I think I have the public school band and some fantastic, patient teachers to thank for this great life of doing what I've always wanted to do more than anything.
When I'm not on stage, I'm actually working, meeting, reading and dreaming on the subject of what would it would take for struggling orchestras to enjoy a renaissance of attendance and support. Inspired by my involvement with the innovative BSO since 2001, I founded FutureSymphony, the first think-tank for classical music that brings in the brightest minds from the for-profit world to help performers and ensembles be more sustainable. It's a subject I can't stop thinking about and will be something I advocate for all the rest of my life.
I also love to swim. Long, open-water swims have sometimes left me with sea urchin spines on my hands and feet or surprise meetings with fishermen. Because of that pastime, I started competing in Ironman triathlons. I was also inspired by my sister, who is far better than me on land. She can run a three hour marathon! I was hoping I shared her leg-genes but, alas, my better moments are in the water. I even trained with a great coach who happened to be an ardent BSO subscriber! Certainly my swimming in the open ocean has made me a better trumpet player by building my lung-capacity and endurance.
My life changed forever when I walked in to Nordstrom at Towson to buy some shoes. That's where I first saw my future wife, Laura, working behind the perfume counter. Once I finally talked to her, we were a couple from that moment. Our first date was even at the BSO. She brought a friend who was a violist that I tormented with viola jokes much of the evening. We trumpet players can't tell enough viola jokes! We eventually got married in my mom's backyard and we work together on FutureSymphony night and day with our three dogs, Malie, Daphne and Chloe, to keep us sane.