Ann Richards

Ann Richards


Hometown: Nashville, Tennessee
Member of the Nashville Symphony since 1977


What inspired you to become a musician — was there a moment of epiphany, or a particularly influential person who encouraged you?
I came from a musical family, but no one influenced or coerced me to choose the flute. I had several slightly older friends (7th graders!) who played the flute, and I was enamored by the sound and looks of their flutes. My Dad already had the violin, sax and clarinet covered, and my Mom the piano, so I may have wanted something different. Looking back, it was a good decision, since I have small hands and also have no desire to deal with reeds or rosin!

What music do you most enjoy performing with the Nashville Symphony? 
I love the large works of the famous European composers but also appreciate much of the newly written compositions, especially by living Americans.  

Which composers write the best music for flute? 
Many composers have written fine flute parts, but the ones that really twinkle are by Dvořák, Mendelssohn, Britten and Ravel, to name a few.  

You grew up in Nashville. How has the city changed for you, and what most excites/concerns you about the city's evolution? 
Nashville grew immensely during the years I was away — think no interstates and just one tall building — so the change that is happening now seems very similar. I feel that perhaps there is not enough care, foresight or vision to preserve the worthy historical elements while maintaining a healthy, livable community.

What do you enjoy doing when you're not rehearsing or performing? 
My NSO bassist husband Glen Wanner and I enjoy cycling, hiking, kayaking, traveling and going to hear our son Marcus Wanner play jazz. We are involved in Walk/Bike Nashville (an advocacy group for safe streets), the PTA and our teaching.

What would you most like people in the audience to know about the Nashville Symphony?
I would like audience members to know how much we enjoy presenting concerts, because they are the results of much hard work and training. It is an honor to play in a fine orchestra, and we are happy that our audience members love to come listen.