Phyllis Comstock – Clarinet

Phyllis Comstock joined EMSO in 2016 as 2nd clarinetist, playing on a Buffet R-13 with a Kaspar mouthpiece. Besides orchestral playing, she enjoys wind band and performs with the Encore Wind Ensemble, where she was a founding member in 1996, as well as the Como Pops during the summertime. Phyllis grew up in Chatfield, Minnesota where

Joyce Laidlaw – Clarinet

Joyce Laidlaw joined the 3M Symphony Orchestra in 1973 and continues to perform with EMSO. She is the principal clarinetist for the orchestra.  Her instrument is a Buffet R-13 clarinet. Joyce is a retired hospital laboratory scientist. She grew up in Fergus Falls, MN and now lives in St Paul. Her favorite hobbies are genealogy,

Brenda Renalls – Flute

Brenda Renalls joined EMSO in 2007.  She plays flute and piccolo. Brenda’s musical career started with piano and baton lessons (YMCA Marching Band) in grade school. She switched to the flute when the band director (also a female flautist) told her that she had the right mouth structure for flute playing and offered to give

Leanne Ekstadt – Oboe

Leanne was raised in Pipestone, Minnesota, and started playing oboe after switching from clarinet in the eighth grade. She earned a B.A. in music education from Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minnesota, where she studied oboe with Thomas Tempel and Marilyn Ford, while playing in Concert Band and Orchestra. Upon graduating in 1979, Leanne was asked to join

Patty Cook – Flute

Patty Cook became a full time member of EMSO in 2015. She plays a Pearl Elegante Flute. Patty began playing the flute in 5th grade, because her mom suggested the flute sounds “like a bird.” Despite the fact it took a month to master the mouthpiece alone, she has never been sorry for her mother’s early guidance,

Kim Heit – Clarinet

Kim Heit joined EMSO in 2006. She plays clarinet and bass clarinet. Kim started playing clarinet in grade school and continued through college, briefly studying with former Minnesota Orchestra Principal Clarinetist Cloyd Williams. She took a long break from music to concentrate on family and work.  In 2006, she joined the 3M Symphony Orchestra (now