Lon Bussell

Instrument: Oboe

Education: University of Southern California School of Music

Hometown: Los Angeles, California

Neighborhood: Anderson Township

Joined the CSO in 1983

Professional experiences: Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Long Beach Symphony, Pasadena Symphony, Santa Monica Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra

Inspiration as a musician: I get inspired from all of my amazing colleagues in the CSO as well as the great conductors we play under and wonderful soloists.

Favorite Orchestral Work: Anything by Mahler.

Current playlist: Mahler Symphony #5, Bill Evans, Bach (as interpreted by Glenn Gould), Frank Zappa

Favorite things to do in Cincinnati? I really love getting out on the roads and trails of Cincinnati for runs. I'm an avid runner, having competed in 12 marathons, with a personal best of 2:45. In 2001 I was the top Cincinnati finisher in the Boston Marathon. I still train hard and love to race. Kiki and I also like to hike in all of the various natural areas in this region, especially the Cincinnati Nature Center.

What activities/organizations are you involved in outside of the CSO? I'm the adjunct professor of oboe at Xavier University. I have also taught at CCM, UCLA and UC Irvine.

Hobbies: My hobbies include scuba diving and photography- sometimes at the same time! We travel a lot, and go to Cozumel for diving (usually) 2 or 3 times a year. Kiki and I also love traveling in general. We have made several journeys to Europe, including Switzerland, France, Italy and Slovenia as well as the west coast of the US. 

Favorite food: My wife (Kiki) is an amazing cook, so I'm spoiled!

Fun fact about Lon: Despite having climbed many high mountains in Colorado and California I have a fear of heights!

Oddest practice quarters: I had a big oboe d'amore solo the week after a dive trip to Cozumel, so I spent some free time practicing in the room above the dive shop looking at the Caribbean. It was odd yet inspirational!

Funniest concert memory: It's funny now... While on tour in Japan I was playing both the on-stage and off-stage first oboe parts to Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique. I had to take my shoes off so that my footsteps were not noticed during the very quiet section after the off-stage part. Usually this is done with 2 players!