Announcing our new music director, Roberto Kalb! Plus: Audition excerpts available

Roberto Kalb

Roberto Kalb, LSO Music Director

The LSO is thrilled to announce the appointment of our new music director, Roberto Kalb, to lead the orchestra for our 2015-2016 season. He’s the LSO’s ninth musical leader, and the second conductor to hold the title of Gilbert S. Omenn, M.D. Music Director.

Roberto continues our longstanding tradition of leadership by students of the famed U-M orchestral conducting program in the School of Music, Theatre & Dance.

Roberto already holds a Master’s Degree in Composition from U-M, and is simultaneously pursuing Doctoral degrees in Composition at the New England Conservatory of Music and Conducting at the University of Michigan.

Read more about Roberto in the full biography available here.

He will introduce himself to prospective members at the Virtual Season Kickoff Meeting on Sept. 16 at 7 p.m. Participate via any computer at (enter the meeting as a guest) You can also download the Adobe Connect app for mobile devices and enter the meeting wherever you are.

Roberto and the LSO Committee will hold auditions in late September. Audition excerpts for each instrument are now available on this page, along with the dates and times for auditions and a full description of audition requirements.

If you are interested in joining Roberto and the LSO for this season, and you have not played with us before, please see this page to get started. 

Welcome, Roberto!

Calling all musicians!

Do you play an orchestral instrument?

Are you in grad or med school, or training/working in a science/medical field?

Want to meet new people, all involved in science & health?

The U-M Life Sciences Orchestra (LSO) is for you!


The LSO was founded in Fall 2000 to bring together amateur musicians who are students, faculty, staff and alumni of U-M’s life sciences and health units: the Medical School and the rest of the Health System, the schools of Public Health, Nursing, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Social Work, Kinesiology and Natural Resources, the Life Sciences Institute, and the life science units of Rackham Graduate School, Engineering, LS&A and other areas of U-M.

We routinely attract more than 1,000 people to our concerts in January and April, and we play major classical works in the fantastic Hill Auditorium. We share a lot of fun times as our members discover their common interests and backgrounds during Sunday night rehearsals designed for busy schedules.

If you’re interested in joining the LSO:

  • Visit our web site, to learn more about the LSO!
  • Fill out our online form, at This adds you to our e-mail list.
  • Take part in our “virtual meeting” on , Sept. 16 at 7 p.m. via (enter the meeting as a guest)
  • Prepare a brief piece of your choice, plus the required excerpt for your instrument. Find the excerpt for your instrument & other info at, in late August.
  • AUDITION! All prospective members (even those who played with us before) must audition. Sign up online at starting Sept. 16. Auditions are Sept. 21, 22, 24 and 27. You’ll be notified if you’re accepted.
  • Enjoy the LSO! The member picnic is Saturday, October 3 (location TBD), and the first rehearsal is Sunday, Oct. 4, 7-9:30 p.m., at the School of Music on North Campus.

Even if you can’t play this year, mark your calendar for these two Sundays:
Jan. 24 & April 24, for our concerts at Hill Auditorium. Both are free and begin at 4 p.m.

 Download and print a flyer of this page to share!

Announcing our 2015-2016 season!

Summer may be a quiet time for the LSO, but we’re already planning ahead for our new season.

We’ve chosen the following dates for our auditions, rehearsals and concerts – and for the first time, we’re also planning a kickoff picnic for all our members.

If you’re interested in playing with the LSO, but you haven’t yet filled out our webform to join our email list, please do so now!

Auditions (locations TBD)

  • Monday, Sept. 21st 7-9 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Sept. 22nd  7-9 p.m.
  • Thursday, Sept. 24 7-9 p.m.
  • Sunday, Sept. 27 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

We will post the roster of those chosen to play in the LSO on this site on Sept. 30

Member kickoff potluck picnic: Saturday Oct. 3rd


Sunday evenings, 7-9:30 p.m. at the School of Music Rehearsal Hall unless otherwise noted

Fall/winter rehearsals:

  • Oct. 4, 11, 18, 25
    (plan now for Halloween costumes on the 25th!)
  • Nov.  8, 15, 22
  • Dec 6, 13
  • Jan 3, 10, 17
  • Thursday Jan. 21st – time and location TBD
  • Dress rehearsal Sat 23rd, time TBD, Hill Auditorium

Concert Sunday, Jan. 24th at Hill Auditorium, time TBD

Spring rehearsals:

  • Jan. 31
  • Feb 7, 21, 28
  • Mar 6, 13, 20
  • April 3, 10, 17,
  • midweek rehearsal – date, time, location TBD
  • Dress rehearsal Saturday, April 23 at Hill Auditorium, time TBD

Concert Sunday, April 24 at Hill Auditorium, time TBD

More information to come about what we’re playing and who will lead us this season.

Questions? email

Take Your Instrument to Work Day?

Since we’re all about blending medicine, science and music, we thought it would be fun to take photos of some of our members with their instruments in the places where they work or train.

We’re fortunate to have skilled amateur photographer (and retired physician) Dr. Bern Muller in our viola section. Together with our members, he came up with fun ways to show how LSO musicians make a difference in their work or studies — and find release through music.

See all the photos here

Details about our May 10 concert

Palmer violin red lightsm

Biomedical engineer Olivia Palmer ‘examines’ her violin under a red lamp used in her studies of blood vessels

Engelke trumpet patient

Carl Engelke tries to use his trumpet to listen to the lungs of “patient” Heiko Yang, a fellow MD/Ph.D. student and LSO celeste player.

Froehlich cello chairsm

Whit Froelich “triages” his cello at the Emergency Department check-in station where he works

devare violin 2sm

Surgical resident Jenna Devare “scopes” her violin in the Otolaryngology clinic.

Yang piano smt

Heiko Yang “plays” a keyboard made of Eppendorf tubes in the lab where he’s working toward his Ph.D.


Meet our soloist: Eric Dluzniewski

At our Sunday, May 10 concert, the winner of our 2014-2015 Concerto Competition, Eric Dluzniewski, will perform Weber’s Bassoon Concerto – on the euphonium. He’ll also join the LSO trombone section for the second half of the program, Holst’s “Planets” suite.

Eric, whose last name is pronounced Doo-zha-ness-key, became interested in studying music at an early age. As he pleaded with his parents for a drum set, they countered with piano lessons. A compromise was reached, and while Eric thought his bright-red drums were leading him to rock-stardom, he was blind to the fact that his piano studies were fostering a love of melody, harmony and music theory.

He began playing the euphonium in seventh grade band and went on to pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in euphonium performance at Central Michigan University and the Eastman School of Music, respectively.

Eric currently works as strategic communications coordinator in the U-M Health System’s Office of Development, where he enjoys supporting health system’s $1 billion Victors for Michigan campaign by helping to tell stories of its groundbreaking medical discoveries and transformative patient care through various print and digital mediums.

Full details about our May 10 concert


Out of this world: LSO free concert on Mother’s Day, May 10

LSO at Hill-400hHolst’s Planets, Mozart’s Jupiter Symphony & euphonium solo featured

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — If you think your mother, wife or grandmother is the best in the solar system, here’s one way to show her: Take her to a free concert on Mother’s Day, May 10 featuring planet-themed music.

Even if your mom isn’t available, the performance by the University of Michigan Life Sciences Orchestra at Hill Auditorium will transport you to other worlds.

The concert will begin at 4 p.m. and is open to the public with general admission seating. No tickets are required. The LSO is made up of medical, health and science faculty, staff, students and alumni from across U-M, and is led by music director Adrian Slywotzky with assistant conductor Joseph Bozich.

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Female singers needed for special “Planets” choir

The U-M Life Sciences Orchestra needs female singers for a special choir that will perform the vocal part on the last movement of Holst’s “The Planets” at a concert on Sunday, May 10 (Mother’s Day) at 4 p.m. at Hill Auditorium.

Choral experience is required, and affiliation with the U-M science and medical community is preferred.

All prospective singers should be available for rehearsals at 6 p.m. on April 26 and May 3, the dress rehearsal on the evening of May 7, and a pre-concert warmup. Music will be provided electronically ahead of the first rehearsal so singers can familiarize themselves with the part.

Email to indicate interest. Include information about your vocal range and experience.

Save the date: May 10 concert featuring Holst’s Planets, soloist

The LSO is pleased to announce the program for our next concert!


Sunday, May 10, 2015 (Mother’s Day)

4 p.m., Hill Auditorium

Free; no tickets required

All ages welcome

Mozart: Symphony No. 41 “Jupiter,” Movement I: Allegro vivace

Weber’s Bassoon Concerto in F Major, Op. 75
Played by LSO Concerto Competition Winner Eric Dluzniewski, euphonium

Holst: The Planets

Watch for more information as the season progresses!