Music Director Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra

JOB TITLE: Music Director

The Music Director functions as the principal conductor, artistic head and public face of the
organization. As the public face of the organization he/she serves as an advocate and ambassador
representing the orchestra to the community. The Music Director reports directly to the Board of
Directors through the Board Chair.

The Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra has been an important and integral part of the community for
over a century, tracing its roots back to the 1880s when the first orchestral ensemble was formed in
Hamilton. In 1949, the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra was founded as a professional ensemble, and
has played an important role in shaping the cultural landscape of the City of Hamilton and the
surrounding region. Today, the HPO is one of the finest regional fully professional orchestras in Canada
and is a leader in Hamilton’s robust arts community where it provides professional orchestral services
and music education programs. With 10 concerts in the Great Hall at Hamilton Place each season and 32
core musicians, the HPO is committed to its vision to excite, engage and encourage an appreciation of
orchestral music by everyone in our community and region.


1. Conducting Skills
• Interpretive skills and instincts developed and honed through sequential and increasingly
demanding performance experiences as a conductor.
• Advanced aural skills to deal with complex problems of orchestral intonation, balance, and
colour; advanced skills in sight-reading and transposition, especially as applied to the
preparation of orchestral scores for performance.
• Detailed knowledge and understanding of all instruments used in orchestral performance;
functional keyboard skills.
• Practical experience in the art of composition is required. This means an awareness of the
creative process and its choices, systems and procedures.
• Advanced skills in musical analysis based on professional competence in counterpoint, harmony,
composition, musical structures and orchestration. These skills must be integrated to provide
the basis of artistic interpretation and the preparation of scores for performance.
• Demonstrated mastery of various musical styles; an awareness of how to discern the effects of
time, place, personality and relevant performance practice upon the way a work should sound,
and an understanding of how it should be played to achieve the intended effect.
• Baton technique: Ability to maintain continuity of rhythm, line, structure and interpretive
integrity in the overall performance of a work while evoking and controlling response using
gestures at all levels of musical detail.
• Ability to communicate effectively with the musicians of the orchestra, both in and out of
rehearsal, engendering an environment conducive to a satisfying professional experience and
performances of high quality. • Comprehensive knowledge of the orchestral repertoire, as well as chamber orchestra, opera,
ballet and choral/orchestral repertoire; detailed knowledge of scores forming the basic
literature of each historical period of orchestral performance.
• Comprehensive knowledge of the history of music and its relationships to Western civilization
• Sufficient language skills to coach singers in French, German, Italian, Latin, Russian and Spanish;
ability to read music source materials in original languages.

2. Artistic Director
• Ability and desire to assume a creative leadership role within a complex structure of
relationships within the organization.
• Adherence to principles, fairness and sensitivity in all matters pertaining to orchestra personnel
such as auditions, terminations and seating, etc.
• The judgment, imagination and practical sense to create balanced programs of significance to
the ensemble, the occasion and the community.
• Knowledge of current solo artists, contemporary music and performance practices
• Functional knowledge of and respect for the orchestra’s administrative/business operation,
including governance, fundraising and marketing/public relations.
• Ability to embrace education/learning as a key activity for audience, community and
• An understanding of musician governance structure and practice and collective bargaining
• Ability to work collaboratively with management, boards, volunteers and members of the

3. Community Artistic Leader
• A compelling vision of the impact an orchestra can have on its community, and an ability to
realize that potential through programming, engaging the corporate and private audience and
engaging in various forms of activities such as education and outreach programs.
• Awareness of the role the orchestra plays in a changing society.
• Ability to serve as an influential community advocate for the organization.
• An aptitude for good public and personal relations.
• Effective public speaking skills.
• Ability to act with maturing and discretion in sensitive issues.
• Awareness of political processes and the development of public policy.
• Ability to assess the environment in which the orchestra performs and understand the
implications of that environment for the orchestra’s goals and objectives.

The successful candidate will have a University Degree, a Masters in performing arts and at least 5+
years of experience conducting professional orchestras. The ideal candidate will have prior experience
as a Music Director with a professional orchestra. Working knowledge of German, Italian and French and
languages is desirable; composition and arranging skills are strongly recommended.

Please send resume, cover letter and list of upcoming engagements by 5pm, November 7, 2013 to the
attention of Carol Kehoe, Executive Director, 105 Main Street E., Suite 501, Hamilton
ON L8N 1G6.

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