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Jessica Nance, Acting Associate Principal Viola

Jessica Nance joined the Kansas City Symphony in 1995 and began serving as the assistant principal viola in 1997. Currently, she is serving as the acting associate principal viola. She is a member of the local chamber music group Summerfest Concerts and has appeared with many other Kansas City area ensembles, including the Boulevard String Quartet, newEar Contemporary Chamber Ensemble and the Kansas City Chamber Orchestra. Nance has been a member of the Grand Teton Music Festival and the Des Moines Metro Opera. She also has performed with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and the New World Symphony. Before moving to Kansas City, she held the principal viola chair with the Michigan Opera Theatre and the Windsor (Ontario) Symphony.

Ten questions about me:

How did you choose your instrument?

My older sister played the violin, and my parents had me start violin lessons also when I was eight. A couple of years later, I thought I might like to do something just slightly different, so I switched to the viola, making my elementary school strings teacher very happy!

Tell us about your family and your hobbies.

I am married to KCS Trumpeter Brian Rood, and we have two young children. I enjoy running and triathlons, and I have run several marathons and completed a half-iron distance triathlon.

What quality do you most admire in others?

Integrity. I am always impressed by people who do the right thing, even when it is hard or entails personal sacrifice.

What good book have you read recently?

I love to read. Lately I have been re-reading a lot of children's and young adult books that I remember from my childhood. My adult impression is one of great admiration for authors who can successfully navigate very difficult subject matter in books for young people.

What is your Kansas City Barbecue "joint" of choice?

Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbecue

What is a "must-have" in your fridge?


What's on your ideal pizza?

Cheese and pepperoni