Bethany Washington is a member of the second violin section with the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra. She also performs in the first violin section of the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony and with the Northern Iowa Symphony Orchestra. Formerly, Bethany was a member of the Macon Symphony Orchestra in Georgia.
Bethany is working towards her Masters in Violin Performance at the University of Northern Iowa. In 2018, she graduated summa cum laude from the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University. She currently studies with Steve Koh; past teachers include Ross Winter, Amy Schwartz-Moretti, David Kim, David Halen, Robert McDuffie, and Samantha George. Bethany began playing the violin at the age of four through the Suzuki method. She has completed Suzuki Units 1-4 of teacher training and currently teaches at the UNI Suzuki School. Bethany looks forward to growing her teaching and performing career and becoming more involved in Iowa. She lives near Cedar Falls, IA with her husband.
A native of Fargo, North Dakota, violinist Madeline Capistran began studying the violin at age 9 with her mother, Jane Linde Capistran. As a teenager, she continued her studies with Sally O’Reilly at the University of Minnesota. Ms. Capistran holds a B.M. in violin performance from Michigan State University and a M.M. in violin performance from DePaul University, where she studied with Ilya Kaler. As an active chamber and orchestral musician, Ms. Capistran was a member of the Northwest Indiana Symphony Orchestra, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony, and she has attended such summer programs as Musicorda, Meadowmount, the Colorado College Summer Music Festival, the Hot Springs Music Festival, Dakota Chamber Music, and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Chamber Music Institute.
As a soloist, Ms. Capistran has performed with the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony, the Fargo-Moorhead Area Youth Symphony, on National Public Radio’s show “From the Top” with pianist Christopher O’Riley, with Chicago’s Logan Chamber Players, and has appeared as part of the “Noontime Concert Series” at the University of Chicago. Other recent playing and teaching opportunities have included being a Teaching Artist at St. Ambrose University, a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Iowa, and subbing with the Minnesota Orchestra. She is currently living in Iowa, where she teaches at Coe College and plays in the Quad City Symphony Orchestra, the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra, and Orchestra Iowa as Assistant Concertmaster.
Lucy Duke is an avid musician, teacher, and composer enjoying life in the East Village of Des Moines. Lucy performs regularly across Iowa, Nebraska and Illinois as a violinist in the Omaha Symphony, the Des Moines Symphony, the Quad Cities Symphony and Orchestra Iowa.
Lucy earned both Masters and Bachelors degrees in Violin Performance at Northwestern University, studying with violinist Gerardo Ribeiro. Previously, she studied at Southern Methodist University with pedagogue Jan Sloman. Amongst other honors, she was awarded the Anna Schaeffler Lockwood Award for Excellence in String Music, membership in Pi Kappa Lambda—premiere National Music Honor Society, Undergraduate Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement (Northwestern), as well as the Presidential Scholarship (SMU).
When Lucy isn’t playing or teaching, you can find her taking long strolls along the river with her dog, Chunk, or searching out the best pizza Des Moines has to offer!
Robert Espe currently plays violin full-time with Des Moines Symphony as well as the wcfsymphony. He is a member of the Metro Chamber Ensemble and a regular sub with Quartet 515. He plays with several area ensembles ranging from folk and rock to klezmer and tango and is an experienced pit orchestra musician.
Robert grew up in Independence, IA and began his violin studies at the age of three with the UNI Suzuki School in Cedar Falls, IA. He was briefly concertmaster of the UNI Symphony Orchestra during his undergraduate studies, before earning a B.S. in Bioinformatics, Minor in Music in 2011.
In addition to his work as a violinist, he is also a professional freelance saxophonist, regularly appearing with Turner Center Jazz Ensemble and the Des Moines Big Band, and is an on-call sideman for local and visiting artists at Des Moines’ jazz cabaret, Noce. He is also a semi-regular horn section member of the Colorado-based, modern funk, roots, and vintage soul band Euforquestra. He has also performed with numerous musical icons including pop superstar Katy Perry and Motown legends The Temptations. As a mandolinist, he is a founding member of Choro Moingona, Des Moines’ premier choro ensemble.
Misha Rosenker has been principal second violinist with the Des Moines Symphony since 1998.
Matt Meyer has degrees in Violin Performance and Music Education from the University of Iowa. He spent two years teaching orchestra in the Iowa City Community Schools. Meyer has taught orchestra in the West Des Moines Schools for more than ten years and also conducts the Youth Sinfonia and Preludio Strings at the Des Moines Symphony Academy.
Mary Dahlby grew up in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where she studied violin with Marlis Windus, concertmaster of the Cedar Rapids Symphony. In addition to performing with her school orchestras, she performed with the Cedar Rapids Youth Symphony six years and the Cedar Rapids Symphony two years. She appeared as a soloist with the Cedar Rapids Youth Symphony.
Dahlby graduated from Iowa State University with a bachelor of science degree in home economics education and from Northwest Missouri State University with a master of science degree in home economics. While at Iowa State, she performed with the Iowa State Symphony Orchestra and a student quartet.
She has taught various combinations of family and consumer sciences, health, and talented and gifted programs in Iowa school districts including Brooklyn-Guernsey-Malcom, Adel-DeSoto-Minburn, Dallas Center-Grimes and Urbandale. She currently teaches family and consumer sciences at Urbandale High School and was named the Iowa Jump$tart Coalition Financial Educator of the Year in 2008.
Dahlby and her husband, Gordon have two grown children.