Two New Staff Members Join Quad City Symphony Orchestra

April  08, 2014

      Two new staff members have joined The Quad City Symphony Orchestra. Benjamin Klemme  fills the position of assistant conductor, community engagement coordinator, and music director for the youth ensembles, while Stephen Mohr is the new Director of Development. 

      Ben Loeb, executive director of the orchestra, says Klemme will serve as its artistic liaison. 

      "Ben will be able to get into the community, advocate for youth orchestra participation, meet with community members, and hopefully increase support and recognition of this really fine program we have."

       Loeb says Klemme will also help conductor and music director Mark Russell Smith improve the orchestra. 

      "Marc will have his ears out in the hall during rehearsal to help him during balances. In fact, they can even switch places a little bit so that Mark can hear the orchestra out in the hall. It's something he's never really done. If we need another conductor--say for holiday pops--which Ben is going to be conducting, we have consistency."  

      Klemme grew up in the Quad Cities, played in the youth orchestra, and graduated from Pleasant Valley High School. He has since earned degrees from the University of Iowa, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and the University of Minnesota where he now conducts the University's Campus Orchestra.

      Mohr formerly served as Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations at the Figge Art Museum, and replaces former director Paul Plagenz, who now works for Western Illinois University.

(Photo of Benjamin Klemme courtesy of the Quad City Symphony Orchestra.)