New Jersey Symphony Orchestra violist CHRISTINE TERHUNE has been a member of the NJSO since 1976. She has served as assistant principal violist of the New York Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra, and she spent three summers in the Filharmonica de las Americas in Mexico City and several seasons in the Westfield and Colonial Symphonies. Terhune studied with Max Aronoff and Jesse Levine and received her Bachelor of Music degree from the New School of Music in Philadelphia.
Terhune is an active freelance musician in the New York/New Jersey area and has enjoyed two residencies/tours to Ireland and Germany. She is also a founding member of the Hanover Classic Consort, which performs regularly in the metropolitan area. Terhune maintains a private teaching studio for viola and violin. She resides in Morristown with her husband, composer David Sampson, and their two children, Ben and Mark.
Question & Answer
MOTIVATION: I work with kids in the Newark school system quite a bit, and their love of music is wonderfully inspiring. They remind me how much fun it is to be spontaneous, and in turn, I get to open up a world of new experiences for them.
FIRST OR BEST CONCERT YOU EVER WENT TO: When I was in fourth grade, my class went to New York to see The Barber of Seville—I’ll never forget it because it was my first opera, first classical, first musical experience in New York. It was very funny, very wonderful and maybe planted a seed …
FAVORITE PASTIMES: I love to garden, and I am currently learning exactly what it takes to keep the groundhogs, deer, rabbits and raccoons out of the vegetable patch!
FAVORITE FILM OR TV SHOW: At the moment, my favorite film would have to be The Snow Walker and favorite TV shows would be “Antiques Roadshow” and “Pawn Stars.”
BEST THING ABOUT NEW JERSEY (BESIDES THE NJSO!): I love that all the out-of-staters think that New Jersey is all about “what exit,” but we know the secrets of Jersey west of the Parkway—like Blairstown, the gorgeous farmlands, gardens … there are a lot of beautiful surprises if you venture a bit.
PICNIC BASKET CONTENTS: A great red wine, potato chips, a good sandwich, my pastel box, camera and my book on tape.
GUILTY PLEASURE: Dark chocolate—lots and lots of dark chocolate, with peppermint maybe.
FAVORITE FOREIGN COUNTRY: Ireland.
IF YOU WERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE? Teal blue.
IF YOU WEREN’T A MUSICIAN, WHAT WOULD YOU WANT TO BE? I would be a visual artist.
METS OR YANKEES: Yankees.
ADVICE FOR YOUNG MUSICIANS: There are many, many ways of contributing with music in addition to the traditional ways. People love music, so wherever there are people, there will be a way of bringing music into whatever the environment is.
WHY MUSIC MATTERS: I’m constantly struck by how instantly I am emotionally transported by the music I’m listening to or playing. Think of the memories and experiences that are attached to different genres of music throughout our lives. I don’t think there is any other medium that can be so transformative for all of us. Music really is the universal language with the power to keep us sensitive and nourish us at the same time.