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Here's my dad, Rodney Van Sickle. I used to sit for hours and listen to him practice. I'd wallow in the beautiful sounds coming out of whatever ancient bass he was playing that day. He could make a scale sound like the most wonderful thing you've ever heard. He played jazz gigs and traveled Canada in dance bands as a teenager. Went on to study legitimate playing in Toronto, then graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. He played double bass in the Pittsburgh Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. After a successful and satisfying 40 year career, he retired in 1996.
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Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra program cover 1985. Image property of Ben Spiegel. Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra with William Steinberg in 1971. Toronto papers on tour with the Pittsburgh Symphony. Local boy done good, 1963.
Rodney retires from the Pittsburgh Symphony in 1996. George Szell conducting the Cleveland Orchestra. 1957. Young Rodney, black horn rims with the Cleveland Orchestra, 1957.
Curtis graduating class 1957. Rodney graduates from Curtis, 1957. William Henning, born 1819 in Prussia. My mother's father's mother's father's father. Preston, Ontario.