George Nickson, Principal Percussionist of the Sarasota Orchestra since 2012, is a graduate of the Juilliard School. He also performs regularly with the Boston Symphony, the Washington National Symphony, and the Detroit Symphony. George was also a recent finalist for a Vienna Philharmonic percussion position, and he teaches at the Tanglewood Music Center, has performed at Tanglewood regularly in solo and ensembles.
Samantha Bennett is Principal Second Violin of the Sarasota Orchestra, is a graduate of Boston's New England Conservatory of Music and also performs regularly with the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, and as Guest Concertmaster of the New Haven Symphony. As a recitalist she has performed in Boston's Jordan Hall, London's Wigmore Hall, and Zankel Hall in Carnegie Hall in New York.
Both George and Samantha are advocates and active performers of contemporary music, and have appeared with the Fromm Players at Tanglewood as well as with leading composers and performers throughout the U.S.
Three years ago they formed ensembleNEWSRQ, a musical collective dedicated to the performance and promotion of contemporary music. This ensemble has virtually jumpstarted the audience for contemporary music in Sarasota and we are delighted to welcome them back to Music Mondays.