Both Snow and Tsuji come to the Orchestra from positions with the Omaha Symphony
The Minnesota Orchestra has announced two new appointments. Flutist Patrick Tsuji joined the Orchestra’s flute section earlier this month. Alan Snow, who joined the ensemble’s second violin section in September 2022, has been promoted to the role of associate concertmaster—which is the ensemble’s third-ranking violinist.
Hailing from New York, Patrick Tsuji won his audition for the Minnesota Orchestra’s flute section in October 2022, becoming the first musician to be appointed by Music Director Designate Thomas Søndergård. After concluding his duties as the Omaha Symphony’s assistant principal flute—a position he had served in since 2019—Tsuji joined the Orchestra for its January 13-15 performances of Felix Mendelssohn’s Scottish Symphony.
Snow began his official duties as associate concertmaster in the Orchestra’s November 2022 performances of Gustav Mahler’s Third Symphony. The role is not an unfamiliar one for the Chicago native, as he previously served as the second associate concertmaster of the Omaha Symphony. While pursuing his bachelor’s degree from Indiana University, he studied under Jorja Fleezanis, the Minnesota Orchestra’s extraordinary concertmaster from 1989 to 2009 who passed away last fall.
Connected to Minnesota from afar
“I was fortunate enough to study with [Jorja Fleezanis] closely at Indiana University and learn from one of the titans of this industry,” Snow reflects. “After school, I continued to play for her and talk with her over the phone, trying to mine as much as possible about violin, taking auditions and life from someone who had seen and done it all.”
He continued, “I have admired the Minnesota Orchestra from afar for many years and have always loved its brand of intense music-making. I couldn't be more excited to start in my new role as associate concertmaster of this incredibly fine group.”
“Alan is an incredibly musical and imaginative musician, and the audition committee was thoroughly impressed by his audition,” says Concertmaster Erin Keefe. “We are thrilled to welcome him as our new associate concertmaster.”
About Alan Snow
Since his first performance with the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra at age 13, Alan Snow has performed solo and chamber works internationally, including performances with the London Symphony Orchestra St. Luke’s and appearances at Chicago’s Symphony Center and Sala Manuel M. Ponce in Mexico City, among other venues. In addition to his prior post with the Omaha Symphony, he previously had concertmaster appointments with the Evansville Philharmonic, Birch Creek Symphony, Columbus Indiana Philharmonic, Terre Haute Symphony, Festival Napa Valley Music Academy, Britten-Pears Young Artists Program, Indiana University’s top orchestras, Carmel Symphony and Music Academy of the West.
His awards and honors include being named a semifinalist at Windsor Festival International Strings Competition, grand prizes at the Walgreens National Concerto Competition, the LAMC Recording Competition, the St. Paul String Quartet Competition, the Discover Chamber Music Competition, second prize at the Rembrandt Chamber Players and honorable mention at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. As a winner of the Keston MAX Fellowship, Snow played under Sir Simon Rattle and the London Symphony Orchestra in 2019. His chamber collaborations include performances with Jorja Fleezanis, Rachel Barton-Pine, James Buswell, Martin Chalifour, Mindy Kaufman, Desmond Hoebig, Robert Vernon, Steve Wyrczynski and Eric Kim.
An avid chamber player, Snow studied closely under the Pacifica Quartet and the Takács Quartet and has recorded two chamber music albums—one as a member of the Chicago Panamerican Ensemble called Voices of Mexico’s Past and Present and one with pianist Joanne Chang titled Dialogos. Both albums explore the rich landscape of classical music in Mexico. Snow also served as first violin of the Eykamp String Quartet and was on faculty at the University of Evansville from 2018 to 2021. He studied with Gerardo Ribeiro at Northwestern University before receiving his bachelor’s of music degree from Indiana University under Sibbi Bernhardsson of the Pacifica Quartet and Alexander Kerr, concertmaster of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.
About Patrick Tsuji
Patrick Tsuji was appointed second flute of the Minnesota Orchestra in 2022. He previously held the position of assistant principal flute with the Omaha Symphony from 2019 to 2022. He was also a member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago.
Tsuji has participated in music festivals such as Yellow Barn, Pacific Music Festival, Music Academy of the West, Spoleto Festival USA, National Repertory Orchestra and Aspen Music Festival. He was a top prizewinner of the National Flute Association Young Artist Competition in 2016. He received his master’s degree from Rice University and bachelor’s degree from Carnegie Mellon University. Tsuji has studied with Jeanne Baxtresser and Leone Buyse.
# # #