Glen Ellyn Native to Play Violin with Orchestra at COD

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Byline: Connie Powers Daily Herald Correspondent

Violinist Jennifer Koh will return home to Glen Ellyn tonight to perform with the New Philharmonic orchestra at the College of DuPage Arts Center.

Koh, 21, is a Glen Ellyn native who attended Benet Academy.

"She's an extraordinary musician, she was already in the seventh-grade," said Harold Bauer, music director for the New Philharmonic.

Koh was just a seventh-grader when she won a young artist competition sponsored by the Fox Valley Symphony, which Bauer directed at the time. Koh performed with the orchestra as the contest winner and was so well received she was invited back the next year.

As a grade-schooler, Koh began studying with Almita Vamos at the Music Center of the North Shore in Winnetka. "(Vamos) has a remarkable reputation for producing extraordinary violinists," Bauer said.

When Vamos moved to Ohio to teach at Oberlin Conservatory, Koh followed. She recently graduated, and now studies at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia, one of the most elite conservatories in the country.

Koh's concert with the New Philharmonic marks the third time she has played with the orchestra.

"Coming home gets harder and harder," said Bauer, noting that Koh's schedule allows her few opportunities to visit Glen Ellyn.

In the past year she has performed with the Chicago Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Houston Symphony, Charleston Symphony, Fresno Philharmonic and orchestras in California, Florida, Iowa, Mississippi, Ohio and South Carolina. …