When Ileana was very young, she started playing by ear Beethoven’s Ode to Joy on a small toy piano at home.

What do you want patrons of the Symphony to know about you?
I grew up here in Jacksonville listening to the Jacksonville Symphony when it played at the Civic Auditorium. We had first row balcony seats (piano side, of course). It never occurred to me that I would become a musician with this fabulous group. I am still grateful. I’ve been blessed to have only two jobs since graduate school, this and my FSCJ teaching positions.

What would you be doing if you weren’t a professional musician?
Well, I am also a full time college professor. That about does it.

What do you do in your spare time (other than practice!)?
My husband and I love working out at OrangeTheory and we love to travel.

What is your favorite thing about being a professional musician?
I enjoy working with my talented colleagues and getting to play such a wide variety of music. And, when we have solo vocal artists I enjoy working one on one with them and the conductor.

What is your favorite food?
Bread!

Who is your favorite composer?
Whoever I’m working on at the time. But, I have an affinity for Spanish composers and Beethoven.

Education
BME and BA in Spanish from Jacksonville University; MM in Piano Performance from Florida State University and a MA in Spanish from Middlebury College in Vermont.