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Gus was introduced to the double bass by long-time Salina string-music teacher Susan Higbee. Higbee led Gus into the wonderful world of ensemble music. Gus was priviledged to be one of the last students to study under Salina Symphony Founder and Kansas Wesleyan University Music Professor Eric Stein. Stein laid a firm foundation of traditional orchestral technique from which Gus benefits to this day.
In middle school, Gustaf joined the Salina Jr. Youth Symphony led by KWU Music Professor and Salina Symphony Conductor Ken Hakoda. Gus also joined the Lakewood Middle School Jazz Band under the direction of Gayle McMillan. McMillan taught Gus the basics of playing electric bass and introduced him to genres including jazz, funk, blues, and pop. Through the efforts of a friend's mother, Gus was included in a small jazz combo called Jazz 7 for several years. Gus started playing in his youth group's praise band.
After Eric Stein's unfortunate passing, Gus began taking private lessons from Salina Symphony Principal Bassist John Davis. Under John's tutelage Gus further developed his classical chops. Gus enjoyed taking bass solos to competition as well as playing in orchestras comprised entirely of Double Basses! In high school, Salina Central Band Instructor Ben Rohrer pushed Gus to play harder and more interesting music. Gus played in his first pit orchestra, "South Pacific", and fell in love with the experience. As a sophomore, Gus joined the Salina Symphony.
After graduating from Salina Central in 2010, Gus went on to study physics (and subsequently business) at Kansas Wesleyan University. Gus performed in KWU's choir, jazz band, percussion ensemble, band, and orchestra. In his junior year, Gus played in the pit for Les Miserables and got to know his future wife, percussionist Hannah Antholz.
Shortly after graduating from KWU in 2014, Gus joined a band composed of friends from church, Everyday Lights. Hannah and Gus were married in the summer of 2015. Gus and Hannah moved to Lindsborg, Kansas in 2016. In 2019, Gus became the Principal Bass of the Salina Symphony while still benefiting from John Davis's presence as Principal Bass Emeritus. Gus is the owner and manager of Fili Creative, a media production business located in Salina. Hannah owns the Applequist Percussion Studio in Salina where she teaches private lessons.
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