Dalia Melendez, Soprano

Dalia Melendez is an alumni of Eastern New Mexico University, who obtained a bachelor’s in vocal performance with a minor in theater. She has performed with many choirs throughout her music career such as the ENMU Choirs in their London and Paris tour in 2017. In 2023 she performed in Carnegie Hall with the Concert Choir Chamber Singers from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. She was also a member of the Swanee Singers and Chamber Singers during her time at ENMU and is now a proud member of the Sangre de Cristo Chorale and the Santa Fe Symphony Chorus.

Paul Roth, Collaborative Piano

As the collaborative pianist with The Santa Fe Symphony, Paul Roth plays an invaluable "supporting role" with the orchestra's choral ensembles. He received his musical education at the University of New Mexico and has been in constant demand since launching his professional career. In addition...

Rebecca Callbeck, Violin

Violinist Rebecca Callbeck grew up in the Colorado Springs area, where she performed with the Colorado Springs Youth Symphony and the Manitou Chamber Music Festival. She studied at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, and as a member of her college orchestra, she toured the US, Norway and Argentina. After earning her Bachelor’s in Music, she accepted a position with Milano Classico, a professional chamber orchestra based in Milan, Italy. She later enrolled at the University of New Mexico, where she earned her Master’s in Music in 2023. In the spring of 2024, Rebecca joined The Santa Fe Symphony as a member of the second violin section.

Dave Tall, Bass Trombone

Bass trombonist Dave Hall has been performing with The Santa Fe Symphony since 1990. Before moving to the Southwest, he freelanced in Chicago, performing often with the Chicago Symphony and Lyric Opera of Chicago. Earlier in his career, he performed with Delaware Symphony Orchestra, San Antonio Symphony, and Baltimore Symphony, and many other groups. In addition to his work with The Santa Fe Symphony, local music lovers can also hear him during New Mexico Philharmonic concerts.

In 1995, Dave presented a master class on the orchestral low brass section, playing at the International Trombone Festival. In 1999, he performed at this event once again, this time as a member of Skyline Brass. In addition to his mentors, Charles Vernon and Edward Kleinhammer, Dave studied with Robert Streckfuss, Jay Hildebrandt, Frank Crisafulli, and Arnold Jacobs. He is a clinician for the Edwards/Getzen Instrument Company and teaches privately in Albuquerque.

In his spare time, Dave enjoys reading, film, futzing with computers, and poker.

Valerie Turner, Violin

The Santa Fe Symphony’s second violinist Valerie Turner is a native New Yorker. Born in the Bronx just steps from Yankee Stadium, Valerie studied violin at the State University of New York at Purchase. She received a full fellowship with the National Institute of Orchestral Studies in NYC. Her summer studies included Aspen Music Festival, Meadowmount School of Music, Waterloo Music Festival, and Mannes School of Music. She made her way to New Mexico via the violin section at The Santa Fe Opera and fell in love with the sunsets.

Valerie has freelanced as a violinist extensively, performing with the American Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Charleston Symphony Orchestra, Virginia Opera, Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, Stamford Chamber Orchestra, and the Binghamton Symphony. Besides the Santa Fe Symphony, Valerie regularly performs with the New Mexico Philharmonic, Performance Santa Fe, Opera Southwest, Placitas Artists Series, and Albuquerque Chamber Soloists, as well as being an active member of Music in the Mountains festival for the past ten years.

In 2002, she moved to Albuquerque with her family when her husband became the music director of the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra. Valerie and her husband, Guillermo Figueroa, have three beautiful daughters—Giovanna, Sofia, and Valeria.

Barbara Clark, Viola

Barbara Clark, a native of Jackson, Michigan, attended Western Michigan University and graduated from the University of Northern Colorado with a degree in Viola Performance. Previous orchestras performed with include the Ann Arbor Symphony, Kalamazoo Symphony, Denver Chamber Orchestra, Opera Southwest, New Mexico Symphony, and New Mexico Philharmonic.

Barbara also does bookkeeping. In her spare time she enjoys sewing, needlework, and pottery, as well as showing Arabian horses in Western and English disciplines. She lives in Bosque Farms with her husband Aaron and a menagerie that includes dogs, cats, horses, chickens, and fish.

Frank Murry, Bass

A member of both The Santa Fe Symphony and the New Mexico Philharmonic, Frank Murry has played chamber concerts with Chatter, Serenata of Santa Fe, and Musicos Chamber Players of New Mexico. Formerly a member of the Houston Ballet Orchestra, Frank also performed with Houston Grand Opera, Shreveport Symphony, Ebony Opera, Theatre Under the Stars, and Houston Symphony. His early career took him across the US and Europe to festivals such as the American Institute of Musical Studies, L’Orchestre mondial des Jeunesses Musicales, National Orchestral Institute, and the Aspen and Sarasota Music Festivals. In 2010, Frank had the honor of performing the world premiere of From a Visible Darkness, a solo double bass piece by Daniel Adams, at the National Association of Composers (Texas Chapter) conference.

As a composer, Frank writes for jazz combo, solo bass, and bass ensemble. He has played with noted jazz artists Kinney Abair, Andre Hayward, Anita Moore, Charles Rhinehart, Robert Sanders, Horace Alexander Young, and others. His jazz performances at festivals have included appearances at the Houston International Festival, Baton Rouge Art Festival, Texas Southern University Jazz Festival, and the Southern University Jazz Fest.

Frank started the Albuquerque Bass Workshop and coaches bass for the Albuquerque Youth Symphony Program. Previously an adjunct faculty member at Texas Southern University and Houston Community College, he also taught bass in the University of Houston preparatory program. In addition to running a number of bass workshops and a string camp, Frank has taught at George Vance’s Summer Bass Workshop, the Sandia Music Festival, Twin Cities Bass Camp, and the Kansas City Bass Workshop.

Frank has taken teacher-training courses with François Rabbath and George Vance. He studied bass at Louisiana State University with David Williamson and Thaddeus Brys before earning a Master of Music degree under Paul Ellison at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University.

Leslie Shultis, Bassoon

Leslie Nelson Shultis was born in Chicago and moved to New Mexico with her family when she was fourteen. She is a graduate of the University of New Mexico where she received a Bachelor’s degree in bassoon performance and a Master’s in composition. Her teachers included Artemus Edwards, Scott Wilkinson and Dr. William Wood. She is currently a full-time music instructor at Central New Mexico Community College and performs regularly as a bassoonist with The Santa Fe Symphony and Bosque Bassoon Band. She frequently performs or has performed with other groups in the state including the New Mexico Philharmonic, Opera Southwest, Santa Fe Pro Musica, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, New Mexico Woodwind Quintet, and the Chamber Orchestra of Albuquerque. She has also performed as a bassoonist in Mexico, Italy and Germany. As a composer, Ms. Shultis was a stipendium recipient for the Internationale Ferienkurse fuer Neue Musik in Darmstadt, Germany where she studied with Morton Feldman. She was active as a member of the New Mexico Women Composers’ Guild and served as grant writer, bassoonist and director for “A Program of New Music by Women Composers of New Mexico.” In 2005 Shultis was the commissioned composer for the Professional Music Teachers of New Mexico. That same year she attended and participated in “I giorni di Pulcheria” in Piacenza, Italy where her composition “Still…” was performed.

When not teaching or performing, Leslie enjoys spending time making jewelry, studying foreign languages, travelling, and going to art exhibits with her artist son Mike.

Ken Dean, Timpani

Born in Madrid, Spain, timpanist Ken Dean has lived in Albuquerque since the age of five. Ken was inspired to study music after taking an aptitude test for music and scoring well. He quickly became interested in playing drums, and he has felt the need to play ever since. He began playing timpani in junior high school and joined the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra at age 18. He attended the University of New Mexico, studying percussion with Robyn Shulkowski.

Ken’s fascination with timpani stems partly from the challenge of getting everything right consistently, as the drums do not always cooperate. Ken also discovered a fascination with the jaw harp after encountering a composition by Charles Ives that utilized the instrument. This has led him to performing eighteenth-century compositions actually written for the instrument. Ken also spent a fair amount of time involved in concert production, ultimately becoming Production Manager of the New Mexico Philharmonic in the early 1990s.

Ken says performing with The Santa Fe Symphony has provided a wonderful platform in which to perform; the structure of the organization gives an important voice to the musicians, allowing them a hand in determining their future.

Ken’s other interests include marksmanship, tennis, astronomy, and history.

Gabriel Gabaldon, Tenor

Gabriel Gabaldon is the Pastoral Associate of Liturgy at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Santa Fe, where he has served as cantor/soloist for more than 15 years. In addition to having served as tenor section leader in The Santa Fe Symphony Chorus, Mr. Gabaldon has sung in choirs that have performed for his Holiness Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Basilica and he has performed three times at Carnegie Hall in New York. 

Cammy Cook, Soprano

Albuquerque native Cammy Cook has recently returned to New Mexico as a soprano in high demand. Last season Ms. Cook sang the role of Nedda as an Alumni Artist with UNM’s Opera Theatre in their production of Pagliacci. She is also a regular performer with Opera Southwest where she has sung the roles of Nella in Gianni Schicchi, Madeline/Isabelle in Mollicone’s Face on the Barroom Floor, the Page in Verdi’s Rigoletto, and two original children’s operas. In April of 2012 Ms. Cook played the role of Marisol in the award winning world premier of Ethan Frederick Greene’s children’s opera, A Way Home, which is already scheduled for more performances in February of 2013. Equally at home as a concert performer, Ms. Cook was the soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiem and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the New Life Symphony Orchestra Southwest.

Kathy Olszowka, Bass

In addition to being a bassist for The Santa Fe Symphony, Kathy also plays for Santa Fe Pro Musica, and has been playing for the New Mexico Philharmonic (formerly the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra) since 1999. Kathy graduated from Indiana University.

Peter Erb, Horn

New Orleans native Peter Erb joined The Santa Fe Symphony Horn section in 2013. He has held positions with The Phoenix Symphony, Louisville Orchestra and Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, and continues to perform as Principal Horn in the Arizona Opera Orchestra and the New Mexico Philharmonic. As a member of the Star Wars in Concert orchestra in 2010, Peter toured the United States and Mexico, performing John Williams’ movie scores.

An avid chamber musician, Peter has participated in the Phoenix Chamber Music Society’s annual festival, Albuquerque’s own Church of Beethoven (now Chatter Chamber) series and The University of Chicago’s Noontime Recital Series. Peter earned his Bachelor’s degree at Northwestern University, where he studied with Gail Williams and Bill Barnewitz. He received his Master’s degree from the University of Akron as a student of Bill Hoyt. After leaving school, he was a member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago for two seasons, and attended the Banff Centre Chamber Music program with his woodwind quintet, Hara Quintet.

Peter lives in Albuquerque’s South Valley with his wife Emily, a clarinetist with the Santa Fe Symphony; their polydactyl Maine Coon Cat, Bigfoot; and the newest addition to the family, Sandy, a German Shepherd mix.

Sheila McLay, Violin II

Sheila began playing melodies by ear on the organ at age three, and took up violin, piano, and clarinet when she was nine. At 12 she was studying with UNM professor Morton Schoenfeld on piano, and at 14 with UNM professor Leonard Felberg on violin….

Carlos Vázquez Baur, Tenor

Born and raised in Santa Fe, Carlos Andres Vázquez Baur began his musical journey with the Cathedral Basilica choirs and marimba band, singing in multiple masses and large events including the 400th Anniversary Mass and at Carnegie Hall, and starred in staged productions with Pandemonium…