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Mary Beth Orr - Third Horn



Mary Beth Orr, Third Horn of the GRS, was named winner of two recent solo competitions: the International Horn Competition of America (2013) and the International Women’s Brass Conference (2014). GRSMA asked Mary Beth ten questions to assist in getting to know the newest member of our brass family.


Where did you grow up? Goose Creek, South Carolina, just outside of Charleston.


Where were your musical studies? I double majored in horn and piano at Shenandoah Conservatory, and currently I am a Distinguished Fellow at MSU for their MM Horn Performance program.


Who are your favorite composers? Beethoven, hands down, and Mahler.


Why do you love playing in an orchestra? To me, playing in an orchestra is the fullest realization of who I am. It is me at my best self.


Do you have a favorite place in Grand Rapids? Twisted Yoga. I love that place!


What lead you to the horn? Honestly, it was Beethoven's Seventh Symphony. Years ago my parents gave me two CDs for my birthday. One of them was the Best of Beethoven, which included Herbert von Karajan conducting the Vienna Philharmonic in Beethoven 7. I love that symphony!


Do you have any interests outside of music? I am passionate about the many benefits of yoga, I teach vinyasa, hot vinyasa, and yin yoga regularly.


What was your most memorable musical experience? The GRS performance of Mahler's Second Symphony last May. It was life changing.


Besides the horn, who are your loved ones? My husband, our two children, and our two adorable dogs.


Can you tell us something that we'd be surprised to know about you? I can make a perfect impersonation of a chicken. Oh, and I also sing jazz.

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