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Name: Kate Reddish
Instrument: Viola
Hometown: Riverside, California
Education: BA and MM from UCLA. Artist Diploma from USC
Years With Redlands Symphony: 3rd season as Assoc. Principal, but Kate grew up in Riverside and took lessons at the University of Redlands. She's been a substitute musician with the Symphony for many years.

What other groups do you play with?
I sub with a lot of them! LA Opera, LA Phil, Long Beach, Pacific Symphony. Plus I do a lot of studio recording.

What are some of your favorite composers and pieces?
Bach, Brahms, Schubert, Gershwin, Beethoven (I know, all the biggies); I have a special place in my heart for Hindemith because he was such a champion of the viola.

Explore a playlist of Kate's favorite music here!

What was your most memorable performance?
As a ballerina, every time I’ve gotten to play for the ballet downtown it makes me inordinately happy, and as cheesy as it sounds, playing The Nutcracker with the Miami City Ballet was one of my favorite things ever. Also playing on Ballet Now (Tiler Peck’s collaborative dance project) was a dream. I would get to Dorothy Chandler at 9am to watch the company warm up on stage. Watching real dancers go through the ballet barre is fascinating! They really use it to warm up their bodies, as opposed to simply performing combinations.

Tell us about your family and other non-musical parts of your life!
I’m married to another violist, Eric, whom I met when I was at USC. He and I were totally into each other back then, but it took us another six years to actually start dating. The date that tipped the scales for me was when he came over for chili and viola duets and we played for four hours! After USC, Eric played almost exclusively in rock bands, but now he’s reentered the classical realm and has become something of a Hindemith scholar (he translated Hindemith’s third composition text because he “wanted to know what was in it”). Eric lured me into the rock world a bit; we’ve collaborated with a number of incredible songwriters, and even got to play at a TED talk at the Kennedy Center with Chris Price. We got married on leap day (Feb 29) 2016, so we’ve only had one “real” anniversary. We have two cats, Scooter and Misha, who bring us endless joy.

My mother and sister live up the California coast in Cambria. My father passed away this last March, and I was actually up there when things shut down. I ended up staying in Cambria for the first five months of the pandemic! Having that time with my mom and sister was so special and healing. 

I’m an adult beginning ballet dancer! I took classes as a young child to try to correct pigeon toed-ness but since it was hard, I quit after a few years. About six years ago, I started taking classes and it quickly became my favorite thing to do. I haven’t taken any live classes since things shut down – I used to take at least one class a week all over LA – but have been dancing at home with YouTube videos from the Dutch National Ballet (with live piano!). Dancing has completely revolutionized my concept of pulse and musicality. Filling up a beat of music with movement is profound.

I love other kinds of movement, too, especially yoga. Since the pandemic, I started practicing Kundalini yoga, which specifically focuses on using the breath in dynamic ways to affect your energy. It’s been life-changing to cultivate this practice during this crazy time.

I’m also kind of a genius organizer. I’ve been assisting Nathan Cole (First Assoc. Concertmaster of the LA Phil) with his online teaching platforms this year. I participated in his first Virtuoso Master Course last year and have been helping with organizational logistics since January. He is such an incredible teacher, musician, and mentor, and I’ve really valued the opportunity to work with him so closely on a project that is giving people some musical direction, especially now. And I get to use my type A powers for good rather than evil!

I’m also a Star Trek nerd (Next Gen all the way). When I got to record the theme to Discovery, I literally teared up.

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