Making his mark as a model for today’s conductors, Michael Butterman is recognized for his commitment to creative artistry, innovative programming, and to audience and community engagement. He serves as Music Director for the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra, with whom he will appear at the Kennedy Center’s inaugural SHIFT Festival in 2017. He is also the Music Director of the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra and the Pennsylvania Philharmonic, as well as the Resident Conductor of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he is in his 16th season as Principal Conductor for Education and Community Engagement for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the first position of its kind in the United States.
As a guest conductor, Mr. Butterman makes his debut with both the Philadelphia Orchestra and the National Symphony Orchestra in the 15-16 season. His recent appearance with the Cleveland Orchestra resulted in immediate reengagement for two concerts the following season. Other recent appearances include performances with the Detroit Symphony, Houston Symphony, Colorado Symphony, Oregon Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Colorado Music Festival Orchestra, Charleston Symphony, Hartford Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, Syracuse Symphony, New Mexico Symphony, Santa Fe Symphony, California Symphony, Louisiana Philharmonic, Spokane Symphony, El Paso Symphony, Mobile Symphony, Winston-Salem Symphony, Pensacola Opera, Asheville Lyric Opera and Canada’s Victoria Symphony. Summer appearances include Tanglewood, the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival and the Wintergreen Music Festival in Virginia.
Mr. Butterman gained international attention as a diploma laureate in the Prokofiev International Conducting Competition and as a finalist in the prestigious Besançon International Conducting Competition. As the recipient of the Seiji Ozawa Fellowship, he studied at Tanglewood with Robert Spano, Jorma Panula, and Maestro Ozawa, and shared the podium with Ozawa to lead the season’s opening concert. Earlier, Mr. Butterman was sponsored by UNESCO to lead the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Moldova in a concert of music by great American masters.
For six seasons, Mr. Butterman served as Music Director of Opera Southwest in Albuquerque, NM. During much of that time, he was also Director of Orchestral Studies at the LSU School of Music and was Principal Conductor of the LSU Opera Theater. Previously, he held the post of Associate Conductor of the Columbus Pro Musica Orchestra, and served as Music Director of the Chamber Opera, Studio Opera, and Opera Workshop at the Indiana University School of Music. For two seasons, he was also the Associate Music Director of the Ohio Light Opera, conducting over 35 performances each summer.
At Indiana University, Mr. Butterman conducted a highly acclaimed production of Leonard Bernstein’s little-known 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in a series of performances at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, receiving unanimous praise from such publications as The New York Times, Washington Post, Variety, and USA Today. He was subsequently invited to New York at the request of the Bernstein estate to prepare a performance of a revised version of the work.
Michael Butterman’s work has been featured in five nationwide broadcasts on public radio’s Performance Today, and can be heard on two CDs recorded for the Newport Classics label and on a new disc in which he conducts the Rochester Philharmonic and collaborates with actor John Lithgow.