Barb Englund

Joined EMSO March 2018

Instrument: Cello.  Made by Michael Scoggins

Barbara is a retired music teacher.  She grew up and currently lives in Hudson, Wisconsin.

In her free time, she loves taking care of pets and gardening.

Stephen Thompson

Steve joined the EMSO in 2017 as a cellist.  Steve started playing cello about 15 years ago when his 8 year old daughter started taking violin lessons with this idea that he could keep pace with her as she progressed.  They are both still playing in orchestras (but she is far better than her dad!).

Steve is a geologist/hydrogeologist and spent most of his career working in groundwater protection for the State of Minnesota (DNR and MPCA).  Now he spends his time on his small farm near River Falls, WI.

Activities include woodworking, making maple syrup, bailing hay.  He is slowly restoring an old (1860’s) log home which was one of the first homes in the neighborhood and starting work on a timber frame barn.

James Slegers

joined EMSO in 2016

Instrument: viola

He works as an electrical engineer at MISO

He grew up in Orange City, IA but now resides in St Paul, MN

James loves bicycling and exploring


Travis Bruns

Joined EMSO on 2018

Instrument: 1986 Polman String bass

Currently working as a veterinary anesthetist

He grew up in Lincoln, Nebraska but currently resides in Woodbury, MN

He has many hobbies and interests


Nahree Ki-Cello

Joined EMSO in 2018.

Instrument: Cello

She currently works in 3M global product marketing.

She grew up in Chicago, IL but currently lives in Columbia Heights, MN

She loves drawing, traveling, reading, and making terrible music puns.  Ask her sometime about riding a camel to work one day.  Maybe she will ride it to a concert sometime!


Aaron Ruikka 

Joined EMSO in the fall of 2015

Instrument: Viola

Works as direct suppport staff at North East Residence

Grew up in Hastings,MN and continues to live in Hastings.

In his free time he enjoys playing video games


Jamie Wheeler – Viola

Joined EMSO: 2017

Jamie Wheeler is currently a Senior Product Development Engineer at 3M. She enjoys orchestra, hiking, sewing, making cool stuff. Jamie grew up in Georgetown, Texas and now lives in St.Paul.

Jamie plays a 2001 Eastman Strings viola 900.

John Anker

Joined EMSO: 2008

Instrument: Double Bass

John, now retired, grew up in Minneapolis but currently resides in Eagan.  He takes a strong interest in music, including orchestras, choirs, and musicals.