About Us

The Hillsboro Symphony Orchestra provides a family-friendly musical experience for all audience members through entertainment, education, and cultural opportunities, while providing orchestra members a positive creative outlet for their own personal growth. The orchestra consists of dedicated members who graciously give of their time and talents, and who receive no compensation but take great pride in knowing they are enriching the lives of the Washington County community through a wonderful culture of music.


If you are interested in joining HSO, please contact us at join@hillsborosymphony.org for more information.



Hillsboro Symphony Orchestra performed its debut concert November 16, 2001. Less than 30 musicians arrived for that first rehearsal in September not knowing who would be conducting or what music they would be playing in just two short months.

What brought this amateur group together was a shared passion for playing music. HSO was formed to give amateur musicians from throughout Washington County a place to perform, and give the county an accessible, local opportunity to engage with classical music.

The orchestra included players from high school to retirement age with diverse backgrounds including physicians, engineers, retirees, and stay-at-home parents, all with one common thread: the passion for playing symphonic music.

The newly organized HSO performed their first concert at Thomas Middle School under the direction of conductor Stefan Minde. Although the audience was small, it was the beginning of what is now an ever-growing community orchestra that is nearly 80 members strong. Since that initial concert, HSO has continued to perform a series of three concerts a year: a Fall, Winter, and Spring program offering local musicians and community members an affordable way to appreciate a variety of symphonic music and enhance the cultural experiences available in the Washington County area. All of the HSO musicians share a passion for playing and performing; however, most would not have the opportunity otherwise to play in an orchestra, as players volunteer their time and talents, while needing to keep their daytime jobs.

The orchestra, which is open to all interested musicians, is still made up of people of all ages and backgrounds, musicians who want to perform and hone their skills, providing an entertaining and enlightening musical experience for a varied audience.



Sharon Northe, Conductor

Sharon Northe was born in San Antonio, Texas, raised in Wenatchee, Washington, and graduated magna cum laude from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon, with a bachelor of science in music and a masters degree of arts in music education. She retired in 1997 from the Parkrose School District after 30 years as a band director. As a flutist, she has performed in Spain, Germany, and Austria with the American Flute Orchestra and in Denver; Columbus; Washington, DC; and Atlanta with the Colorado Flute Orchestra. Sharon also performs on flute, alto flute, and bass flute in the LGBT and the Oregon Symphonic Band. Sharon has been conducting the Hillsboro Symphony Orchestra since 2002.


Officers and Board Members

The HSO board of directors is a committed group of volunteers, mostly from the ranks of the orchestra.

• Tiffany Lai, President
• Janelle Youngblood, Vice President
• Emmalisa Sparrow Wood, Secretary
• Wesley Pollock, Treasurer
• Linda Saari, PR Manager
• Tracy Burridge, Business/Corporate Liaison

Past Presidents

• Heather Weaver, 2017–2019
• Bob Bruce, 2015–2017
• Frank Kenny, 2008–2015
• Debbie Amara, 2004–2007
• Jim Thompson, 2003–2004
• Diane Moser, 2001–2003

Supported by: