Cellist Ellen Sanders to Teach in Wood River Valley Full-Time

HAILEY, Idaho – Ellen Sanders, a cellist with the Sun Valley Summer Symphony for 25 years and Summer Music Workshop faculty member since 1998, is now a full-time teacher in the Wood River Valley.

She will divide her time between teaching in the Blaine County School District (BCSD) and the symphony’s year-round School of Music classes.

“The unique collaboration between the school district and the symphony strengthens musical education in the Wood River Valley,” said BCSD Superintendent Dr. GwenCarol Holmes. “In addition to teaching in the public schools and the School of Music programs, she also will offer private cello lessons. This sort of partnership allows us to offer outstanding opportunities to talented students in a small community.”

“Ellen is a world class musician and has always been a favorite teacher with our students. We are so fortunate that we will have her talents in the Wood River Valley all year,” said Jenny Krueger, Sun Valley Summer Symphony Executive Director.

“I heard about the job opening when I was here this past summer,” Sanders said, “and I immediately asked about it. I have always enjoyed working with young adults as they are launching their lives, and I also love the area and the symphony. This is like a homecoming for me.”

She is principal cello of Santa Cruz Symphony, assistant principal cello of Opera San Jose and a regular member of the San Jose Chamber Orchestra. She also has performed frequently with the San Francisco Opera.

In addition, she was a teaching artist for more than 10 years in the San Francisco Symphony’s Education Department, making weekly visits to middle and high school music classes to coach cello sections and chamber music groups. She will wrap up her California performing commitments during the next few months.

Sanders is a graduate of Oberlin College and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

Sanders is teaching three classes at Wood River High School: Freshman Orchestra, Pass Class, and Regular Orchestra (10-12 graders). Rebecca Martin continues to teach 6-8 grade at Wood River Middle School, Chamber Orchestra, and now Advanced Placement Music Theory. Sanders will also take on Sinfonia (Middle School Honor Orchestra Program through the Sun Valley School of Music) and the Elementary Strings also through the school of music. In seven years the orchestra program at Wood River Middle School and High School has grown from 35 total students (6-12 grade) to 145 students (6-12 grade).

The Sun Valley Summer Symphony, which will mark its 33rd season in 2017, is the largest privately funded free-admission orchestra in America. The School of Music teaches approximately 500 students annually, and more than 300 students attend the Summer Music Workshops.

The School of Music works closely with the Blaine County School District, which has been recognized for four consecutive years as one of the best communities in music education by the National Association for Music Merchants.

About Blaine County School District
The Blaine County School District serves approximately 3,300 students in four elementary schools, one middle school, one high school, an alternative high school, and a K-12 rural school. The Blaine County School District is known for its award-winning arts programs, preschool and all-day Kindergarten, advanced opportunities, a diverse student body, and low student/teacher ratios in well-maintained classrooms that include state-of-the-art technology. The BCSD mission is to inspire, engage, educate and empower every student. www.blaineschools.org.

About Sun Valley Summer Symphony
The Sun Valley Summer Symphony, which will mark its 33rd season in 2017, is the largest privately funded free-admission orchestra in America. More than 100 world-class musicians from North America’s most distinguished orchestras, including the San Francisco Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, New York Philharmonic and Houston Symphony, convene for July and August concerts in the mountain resort of Sun Valley, Idaho. Internationally renowned guest artists such as Itzhak Perlman, Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell, Renée Fleming, Yefim Bronfman, Thomas Hampson, James Ehnes, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Audra McDonald, Garrick Ohlsson, Midori, Yuja Wang and Deborah Voigt have performed in the spectacular Sun Valley Pavilion, set in front of Bald Mountain and built from travertine hand-selected in Italy for the venue. In keeping with its mission, the Sun Valley Summer Symphony is involved in the community, sponsoring the year-round School of Music for students ages 9 to 18, Summer Music Workshops and adult education programs. Additional information is available online at svsummersymphony.org.

Jo Murray
208.726.5869 or

November 3, 2016