Meet Johnny Lenz

Reno Phil Cellist

What year did you join the orchestra? 

How long have you been playing music?
33 years

How did you pick your instrument?
I wanted to be just like my dad, cellist and principal horn, John Lenz.

Musician, teacher, and Law Enforcement Officer.

When you’re not playing with the Reno Phil, what would we most likely see you doing in your free time?
Working at my parents ranch, exploring Nevada with my family, or tinkering with motorized things.

What genre of music are you most excited to play?
Neo-classical, post-romantic music… think Shostakovich 10. Although I supposed I get very excited to play Brahms as well, and he was very much Romantic. So, I am most excited for anything with a good cello part, because that means the audience is going to like it.

What is your favorite piece of all time to play, and why?
Dvorak Cello Concerto. It is perfection.

If you could meet one composer/musician, who would it be and why? 
I would really love to meet Johann Sebastian Bach. Mostly just to answer some questions about his intent in the 4th and 5th cello suites, but also to high-five him for the Ciaccona in the D-minor violin partita.

What is your favorite vacation spot?
Slovenia. Lake Bled, to be more specific.

What do you think the audience would find surprising about you?
I am not Peter’s son, I’m actually his nephew.

What about performing live music brings you joy?
The culmination of hundreds or thousands of hours of preparation. The point at which the preparation becomes the product and the product becomes emotion that burns itself into memory.


Reno Phil cellist Johnny Lenz has a good reason for performing in socks! Check out this amazing piece he has dedicated to our first responders.