Sandra Ragusa, Music Director, Montgomery Philharmonic
Sandra Ragusa has an extensive background both as both conductor and a flutist. Before completing her undergraduate degree, she was asked by her flute teacher, Roger Stevens, to join him in the flute section of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra as a substitute flutist.
This experience led her to playing with both the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra under such noted conductors as Carlo Maria Giulini, Zubin Mehta, Mehli Mehta, Andre Previn, Daniel Lewis, JoAnn Falletta, Simon Rattle, and John Mauceri.
In the Los Angeles studios she has worked with composer-conductors John Williams, Danny Elfman, Michael Kamen, Hans Zimmer, Bernard Herrman, and Henry Mancini. Ms. Ragusa has been invited to conduct orchestras on three continents, including recent tours of the southern United States, Austria, and Japan.
As an educator, her orchestras have won top honors in festivals and in 1996 she received an invitation to the prestigious Midosuji Festival in Osaka, Japan. Ms. Ragusa is noted for her interpretation of the core symphonic repertory, and is establishing her reputation as an advocate of contemporary American music as well. Her creative programming has garnered praise from the press and fellow musicians alike.
Ms. Ragusa’s outreach to communities and young people in education has centered around bringing music to all. Her community efforts have filled parks and auditoriums with music lovers of all ages in celebration of music. Known for her ability to build audience, she started the community concert series in her hometown and spearheaded its efforts to build a community concert venue.
Ms. Ragusa received a Bachelor of Music from the University of Southern California and a Master of Music from Carnegie Mellon University. She studied flute with Julius Baker, Jeanne Baxtresser, and Roger Stevens, and conducting with Daniel Lewis and William A. Schaefer.