On the Paducah Symphony Orchestra’s
opening weekend, Paducah Bank’s Nikki Fuller remembers how this unparalleled musical montage of professionals enabled her own personal performance within its ranks.
Nikki began her journey with cello in hand under the tutelage of Paducah’s renowned instructor Doug Van Fleet at St. Mary Middle School. “I was so lucky to have had that experience. Everyone in Paducah knows that his name is synonymous with excellence in music education,” says Nikki. “He, along with Kathy Gardner, built a nationally recognized orchestra program at St. Mary High School in the late 1990s. I believe their influence and my musical experiences while at St. Mary shaped me into a lifelong professional musician.”
Enter the symphony via the coaching of then Paducah Symphony manager Charles Manchester. “I also studied privately during high school with Charles Manchester which was an early introduction to the PSO,” Nikki adds. “I continued to play throughout college at Murray State University in the MSU symphony orchestra and other ensembles.”
Nikki says she feels overwhelmingly privileged to have the opportunity to perform the greatest pieces of music ever written with the talented people who make up the Paducah Symphony Orchestra. And Paducah Bank agrees with Nikki that the very presence of such an esteemed group of musicians, along with a nationally respected conductor in Raffaele Ponti, is a privilege few communities the size of Paducah can enjoy.
“I think often people have this idea that going to a symphony concert would be boring, but they don’t realize that classical music performed live is an experience worth having,” Nikki explains. “It’s an experience that very few people in the world are fortunate enough to have. Whether or not the music is your favorite shouldn’t matter. Having the opportunity to hear a full symphony orchestra is a rare and unique gift to our community.”
Paducah Bank wants to make sure that the community continues to enjoy these rare and unique moments. That is why the bank is serving as a corporate sponsor for the 2021-2022 Paducah Symphony season.