Obituary: Roger Nelson, Grand Rapid Symphony VP and bassist, 56

Posted on: April 4, 2017

Roger Nelson, “who worked 30 years with the Grand Rapids Symphony—first as a musician and later as a top operational manager—has died,” writes John Tunison in Saturday’s (4/1) Grand Rapids Press (Michigan). “Nelson, 56, died Thursday, March 30. Nelson started with the symphony in the 1987-88 season as a double bass player and performed with the orchestra for 17 seasons. He went on to become the symphony’s operations manager and eventually was promoted to vice president and chief operating officer. Other leaders with the Grand Rapids Symphony described Nelson as an innovator who was the person behind the scenes on numerous important projects. Those included the symphony’s 2005 appearance at New York City’s Carnegie Hall, the 2007 Grammy-nominated album Invention and Alchemy and the 2015 ‘LiveArts’ multi-media performance at Van Andel Arena. He pursued ambitious projects and championed artistic programming, many said. Nelson is survived by his wife of 29 years, Linda, and three children.” At its website, the Grand Rapids Symphony has posted funeral information and an appreciation, where friends and colleagues may leave remembrances.

Posted April 4, 2017