A WORD WITH... Jeff Dannelly
Updated: Sep 17
Senior Vice President, Hancock Whitney Private Wealth Manager
Sinfonia Gulf Coast Founding Partner & Board President (2017-present)
Q: Why do you have a passion for supporting live music?
JD: My mom was a middle school chorus teacher for 30-plus years, so I always knew the importance of having access to music in schools. Growing up in a musical family, we learned to appreciate all kinds of music. Playing the piano early, then saxophone, which I played through college, I always knew music would be part of my life.
Q: How has Sinfonia “redefined” the contemporary orchestra experience in your view?
JD: That’s what is great about this organization, while Sinfonia still brings the top talent from around the world to perform with the regions only professional orchestra, it does it with flair. We don’t see this anywhere. And it brings other amazing talent — some to accompany the orchestra, but also many world renown artists — which doesn’t happen often in smaller communities like ours.
Q: Favorite concerts?
JD: Kristen Chenowith performance in celebration of the 10-year anniversary and all its Old Hollywood glamour was quite memorable.
Q: What is your favorite instrument in the orchestra?
JD: Tough question. Cello probably (or the saxophone if they would have one).
Q: What does Sinfonia add to the Northwest Florida Gulf Coast arts scene?
JD: Sinfonia brings talent, musical events and unique concerts to this community — many of which play/perform in cities ten times our size. These events not only entertain us all, but many of these also spend their time bringing their talents into our local schools. Each year, thousands of children are able to have these same experiences — that isn’t replicated elsewhere very often.
Q: What do you hope for Sinfonia in the next 15 years?
JD: Sinfonia will continue to add, tweak, and build upon the last 15 years — keeping the type of events and talent it brings fresh and, in some ways, cutting edge. But, in addition to that, Sinfonia should play a major role in building our community as a cultural hub — building an even bigger infrastructure to support a much larger presence here — allowing for even bigger acts and a much more diverse offering of cultural events.
Q: Name one word to describe Sinfonia Gulf Coast.
– By Zandra Wolfgram