Meet Our Team
Founding Board Member & Artistic Director
John Devlin is an innovative conductor whose performances are hailed by The Washington Post as “refreshingly unfamiliar” events that deliver “a new audience for classical music,” and that have brought “the sold-out house to its feet, cheering.” This is John’s mission as a conductor—to deliver concerts that frame orchestral music in new and innovative ways. His artistic leadership has inspired many forward-thinking concepts such as Gourmet Symphony, Go-Go Symphony, Seamless Symphony, Interactive Symphony, and the New Retro Project. Each reflects John's mission of making classical music attainable and engaging for all audiences. These projects have earned high praise as performances that “stand out and are exciting, ambitious and, dare we say — funky?”
Currently, John is the Assistant Conductor of the Princeton Symphony Orchestra and the cover conductor for the National Symphony Orchestra, assisting Music Director Christoph Eschenbach. He also serves as the Artistic Director and Conductor of Gourmet Symphony and the McLean Youth Orchestra, as well as on faculty at the University of Maryland School of Music as the Assistant Director of Orchestral Studies. With these and other orchestras, Devlin has conducted at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, and at the Music Center at Strathmore.
John graduated with both a Master’s and a Doctoral degree in Orchestral Conducting from the University of Maryland School of Music, where he studied with James Ross. His undergraduate degree is from Emory University, where he graduated summa cum laude with a double major in Music and Latin.
Chris Payton currently books and oversees all of the special events as the Director of Sales at The Fillmore Silver Spring, where clients include Discovery Communications, WeddingWire, and the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders. He is also President of the Board of Trustees of the McLean Orchestra in Virginia. His food and beverage background ranges from being the Chef/Owner of Curry Club in Georgetown (2002-2008) to a 2-year term with Ridgewells Catering. Chris has also had careers in theater as a producer and director in London, as well as in magazine publishing as an Associate Publisher with the BBC.
Camille Cintrón Devlin
Founding Board Member & Communications Director
Camille currently serves as the Assistant Director of Marketing & Communications at George Mason University's College of Visual & Performing Arts. She previously held the positions of: Press Representative for the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC; Public Relations Manager at Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts in Vienna, Virginia; and Public Relations and Marketing Manager at GALA Hispanic Theatre also in DC.
Camille earned a Master’s degree in Arts Administration from Boston University in 2009. While in Boston, she had the opportunity to work in the marketing departments of various performing arts organizations, including the New Philharmonia Orchestra, the Newton Cultural Alliance, Project STEP, and Opera Boston. She also interned with the Eastern Music Festival in North Carolina and the Akron Symphony Orchestra in Ohio.
In addition to her career as a communications professional, Camille remains active as a freelance oboist. She holds degrees in Music Performance from the University of Akron and the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music.
Cara Fleck Plewinski
Cara Fleck Plewinski is a musician and arts manager in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia areas. Upon completing a Master of Arts in Arts Management from American University in 2010, Cara returned to the University of Maryland School of Music—her alma mater—as the Assistant Director of Marketing and External Relations. In 2015, she assumed the additional position of Program Manager for the School of Music’s new summer music program, the UMD High School Music Academy. As an active freelance harpist, Cara is a core member of the Grammy-nominated Inscape Chamber Orchestra and performs with many of the area’s major ensembles.
Elena Forbes is currently the Development Associate for Corporate Relations at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC. Over the past 5 years, Elena held development positions with GALA Hispanic Theatre, the Atlas Performing Arts Center, and the DC Youth Orchestra Program. She also currently serves on the Steering Committee for the Emerging Arts Leaders of DC (EALDC), is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and often serves as a Grant Advisory Panelist for multiple local grant makers.
Elena graduated in 2011 from The Catholic University of America with a Bachelor of Music in Instrumental Music Education and will graduate in Spring 2016 with a Master of Arts in Arts Management from George Mason University. Outside of her professional life, she maintains a profile as a freelance clarinetist.
Founding Board Member
John is a seasoned food and beverage operations director with 15 years of experience in the Washington, DC hospitality industry. John brings with him the expertise gained from managing award-winning wine programs at Star Restaurant Group’s flagship restaurant, Zola, and the acclaimed Mie N Yu in Georgetown. He also served as Wine Director for the Neighborhood Restaurant Group and most recently was the brains behind the wine and beverage programs at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. During his 4-year tenure at the Kennedy Center, he worked hand in hand with the National Symphony Orchestra, The Washington National Opera, The Washington Ballet, and the Performing Arts for Everyone initiative, to create innovative and custom-tailored catering events that showcased one-of-a-kind cocktail creations and culinary tastings.
Founding Board Member
Briana is a passionate arts manager and fundraiser with nearly 8 years of experience in corporate sponsorships, partnership marketing, and brand alignment to support DC’s creative community. She currently works in the Smithsonian Institution’s Office of Advancement as Assistant Director of Corporate Relations. Her previous posts include Destination DC, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and the Pittsburgh Symphony.
A self-professed “culture vulture” and locavore, Briana is an active member of DC’s nonprofit and cultural communities. She is Co-Chair of the Steering Committee for EALDC and is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Metro Events Specialists, and the Young Nonprofit Leadership Network.
Originally from Houston, Briana holds a Master of Arts Management from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Music from Boston University.
Jonathan is merely an amateur when it comes to the food, beverage, and classical music worlds but he brings more than a decade of experience in policy and politics to the team. He served as Policy Advisor to then-Congressman Rahm Emanuel and more recently, as Deputy Chief of Staff to Ernest Moniz at the U.S. Department of Energy. He is currently the Director for Policy and Strategy at Vision Ridge Partners, a firm dedicated to tackling the challenge of climate change through profitable investments. Jonathan is a Chicago native who graduated magna cum laude from Emory University with a degree in Political Science. When he isn't traveling or trying new restaurants in DC (or elsewhere), he is trying to maintain and improve his skills on the drums, in the kitchen, and on the baseball field.