Coeur d’Alene Symphony Music Director and Conductor Jan Pellant and Executive Director Dr. Holly Blanchette have left the organization to take on new roles.
Pellant officially gave the symphony notice of resignation last week. Blanchette did the same earlier this month.
These changes were “a little unexpected,” said the chairman of the board of directors of the symphony orchestra, John Botteli. “Right now we’re just trying to finish our first game of the season. We don’t want to get into anything too quickly.
Finding a music director is never an easy task, said Botteli. After former music director David Demand resigned in 2016, it took the symphony two years to find Pellant.
“The last time… we spent a whole year with guest conductors, the applicants slowly applied and we spent the second year with the finalists,” he said.
For now, the symphony plans to move forward with the season as planned.
Dr Phil Baldwin, who has worked with the symphony for 15 years and is assistant conductor and first violin, will conduct the opening concert of the symphony at the Schuler Performing Arts Center at North Idaho College on October 2.
Returning to the Czech Republic, Pellant accepted a post of director with the Czech chamber orchestra Musici di Praga. Prior to joining the Coeur d’Alene Symphony, Pellant was Music Director of the Lexington Chamber Orchestra and conducted the Czech National Symphony Orchestra, the Prague Symphony Orchestra and the Northern Czech Republic Philharmonic Orchestra. . He also conducted performances at the Pilsen Opera House, the University of Kentucky Opera Theater and the Karlin Musical Theater in Prague during an 11-city tour of Romania in 2007.
“I would like to thank the entire Coeur d’Alene community for allowing me this experience and the OSC Board of Directors for your hard work in helping to develop this organization,” Pellant said in a press release. . “After careful consideration, I decided that I had to continue my journey. The last few years have been amazing for and with CSO. I will remember this time with fondness.
Blanchette, who served as the general manager of the symphony orchestra for just over six months, took on the role of director of development and education at the Las Vegas Philharmonic.
Blanchette received a doctorate in musical arts in oboe performance from the University of Georgia. In addition to the Coeur d’Alene Symphony, Blanchette has performed with the Georgia Symphony, August Symphony Orchestra, ARCO Chamber Orchestra, Royal Fireworks Orchestra, Fayetteville Symphony, Winston-Salem Symphony, NOVUS Chamber Orchestra, Harmonique Winds, Present-Continuous New Music Ensemble and the Washington-Idaho Symphony, among others.
“For now, the board will assume the role of executive director and then we will assess our options,” Botteli said.
“The experiences and knowledge I gained during my stay with the Coeur d’Alene Symphony allowed me to explore a newly discovered passion for administering the arts of a symphony orchestra, in addition to fostering and promote services with a cultural impact in my community. Blanchette said in a statement. “I am fully grateful to the entire OSC Board, staff and musicians for welcoming me with open arms and providing a supportive environment where I was able to further develop my skills in arts administration. ”
“There was a lot of enthusiasm about the individuals and the growth of the organization, so I think it’s fair to guess that people aren’t, you know, very excited about the news,” said Botteli. “I know a lot of good wishes have been expressed to both of you and others… I’m delighted for both of them, for sure.
“Still, I’m sure it must be a little uncomfortable for people… on the heels of 18 months of uncertainty.”