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Don Beller

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Don Beller

A native Western Montanan, Don may stand out as the oldest surviving founding member of the SOR! His love for Montana is maybe only surpassed by his love of playing the string bass. After retiring from his last “real” job, teaching the bass players at the University of Montana, Don has been known to say that he is finally getting to practice learning how to play a melody (something orchestral bass players rarely, if ever, get to do!). He has studied with Sigvald Thompson at Concordia College, Warren Benfield, well-known bassist of the Chicago Symphony and teacher at Northwestern and DePaul Universities, and Roma Vayspapir, principal of the Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra and Spokane Symphony. Besides performing with all of the Montana Symphonies at one time or another, Don has played with the DePaul Symphony Orchestra, the Gold Coast Chamber Orchestra in Chicago, the Spokane Symphony, and is currently the principal bass for the Festival Amadeus Orchestra in Whitefish. In all of his spare time Don loves to work on the restoration of his
Model A Fords, has four or five private bass students, is very interested in double bass lutherie, does some mechanical (mostly antique) clock repair, and most importantly, travels frequently to Missoula and Hardin to see his two grandchildren, Makaela Leder and Finley Quanbeck. Oh - and their parents.