Name: Ruth Leone
Hometown: San Francisco, CA
At what age did you begin playing your instrument? 6
Who have been your greatest musical influences? Jorja Fleezanis (my former teacher and mentor, concertmaster of the Minnesota Orchestra). She is truly an inspiring musician and teacher. David Oistrakh – I never tire of listening to his recordings.
Who are your favorite composers? Mozart, Mahler and Brahms.
What career path would you have taken had you not chosen music? I don't know! I wanted to be a professional violinist from the time I was very young. Maybe medicine.
What's currently playing on your iPod or CD player? My daughter has recently taken over the CD player, so I would have say a certain young pop star who shall remain nameless.
Your hobbies and interests: Boating, hiking, jewelry making and anything that involves spending as much time as I can with my two wonderful kids and husband.
Some little-known, yet interesting facts about you: I went to a great little high school in the heart of the Haight-Ashbury district in San Francisco. Naples is the extreme opposite environment. I love them both.
Funniest concert moment: There have been so many. One that "pops" into my mind was a Western-themed pops concert with our former principal pops conductor. During a rest, all of the violinists put marshmallows on the tips of our bows and continued playing. That was a funny sight I'll never forget.
Daily practice rituals: The usual scales, exercises etc. to warm up. During season it's on to the parts. Any leftover time is devoted to keeping up the rep.
The question you're asked most often about your instrument (and your answer): "Does that hurt your neck or your fingers?" My answer: "No." Of course, when the violin is in its case, I get the standard, "Is that a machine gun in there?"