Tuesday, April 16, 2024

After Near Three-Year Search, Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra Announces New Music Director

The Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra has appointed Michael Butterman as its new music director. (WYDaily file/Courtesy of Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra)

WILLIAMSBURG — The Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra (WSO)’s search for its new music director has come to a close.

WSO announced that Michael Butterman has been appointed as the organization’s new music director.

Butterman, best known as the Music Director of the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra, will assume his new title in July and will begin conducting concerts in September of the 2022-2023 season.

Boulder succeeds Janna Hymes, who ended her tenure as Music Director in May of 2019.

A search committee was formed in January 2019, receiving 194 applications for the position. Candidates came from all over to audition in Williamsburg by working with and directing the orchestra for concerts that were open to the public.

Following his audition with a Masterworks concert in November, Butterman was appointed the new music director.

“Orchestral music has an unparalleled capacity to move the soul, and the WSO will be dedicated to sharing its power and beauty with everyone in the community,” Butterman said.

Butterman grew up in Northern Virginia and attended the University of Virginia and earned his doctorate in conducting at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.

He most recently completed a 19-year association with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra as Principal Conductor for Education and Community Engagement and a 15-year tenure with the Jacksonville Symphony as Associate and then as
Resident Conductor.

He is also the longtime Music Director of the Pennsylvania Philharmonic, and is noted for his national prominence, leading many prominent ensembles throughout the country, including the Cleveland Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, National Symphony, Detroit Symphony, and Houston Symphony.

“Michael Butterman’s creative artistry and exciting programming will no doubt thrill our current audiences, and influence the greater arts community in profound ways,” executive director Carolyn Keurajian said.

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