Engineering a career switch: running an orchestra in Billings, Montana

Posted on: January 22, 2019

“At age 5, Ignacio Barrón Viela received a small cello as a Christmas gift,” writes Anna Paige in Wednesday’s (1/16) Billings Gazette (MT). “His mother still has the small cello and brings it out when he visits his hometown, Zaragoza, Spain. Though Barrón Viela attended a music academy from age 7 to 18, he [became] an engineer…. While working in the engineering field … he performed as a cellist with the Heinrich Heine Orchestra in Dusseldorf, Germany (while serving as general manager) and was a principal cellist with the Nottingham Philharmonic Orchestra in the United Kingdom…. In 2017 … he moved to Los Angeles to pursue an MBA centered on orchestra management at the University of Southern California and joined the university orchestra.” In summer of 2018, Barrón Viela participated in the League of American Orchestras’ Essentials of Orchestra Management seminar. “Barrón Viela found Billings through the League of American Orchestras and said Billings sounded like an exciting place … he moved to Montana to fill the vacancy of executive director for the Billings Symphony Orchestra and Chorale…. ‘There was something that hooked me here…. I am really proud of what they have been doing, and I want to build on that.’ ”

Posted January 22, 2019