MSO Assistant Conductor / MYSP YS Conductor

TITLE: MSO Assistant Conductor / MYSP YS Conductor

REPORTS TO: MSO Music Director & MYSP Orchestra Manager

STATUS: Full‐time, Exempt

DATE POSTED: 3 March 2017
APPLICATION DEADLINE:  24 March 2017, 5:00pm CDT


This shared position as Assistant Conductor of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra and Youth Symphony Conductor of the Memphis Youth Symphony Program is designed to provide musical and artistic administrational experience to a conductor in the early stages of his/her professional career. The Assistant Conductor serves as a community ambassador for the MSO and MYSP, and is a critical member of the team for planning and executing the artistic, educational and community engagement initiatives of two separate organizations. This position is a four (4) year appointment and is renewable at the discretion of the MSO and MYSP. Residency in Memphis is required.


Assistant Conductor
Memphis Symphony Orchestra

• Working in conjunction with the MSO staff, the candidate will plan and conduct educational concerts, community concerts and other special programs as assigned to include but not limited to Summer Symphony, Leading from Every Chair®, Young People’s Concerts, select Pops concerts, runouts, etc. and serve as cover conductor for rehearsals, concerts and other programs as assigned.

• Assist Music Director in programming future MSO seasons; specific accountabilities to include: researching/evaluating potential guest artists, conductors, and composers; researching instrumentations; writing program outlines/scripts; artistic budgeting.

• Participate in planning meetings, media events, fund‐raising activities, speaking engagements, educational and outreach opportunities, development meetings and activities, administrative meetings, and other activities as determined by management.

• Work with MSO staff and educational partners on educational and cultural inclusion initiatives as directed that complement and support the music education curricula set forth by the Shelby County School District.

• Other duties as assigned.

Youth Symphony Conductor
Memphis Youth Symphony Program

• Serve as Principal Conductor and artistic leader of the Youth Symphony.

• Plan and conduct the full Youth Symphony season including a minimum of three annual concerts (fall, winter, spring), Sounds of the Season concert, Kickoff Weekend concert, sectionals, rehearsals, concerts, master classes, and other MYSP activities in collaboration with Orchestra Manager.

• Actively recruit MYSP members in collaboration with MYSP staff, regional public, private, parochial, and home-school music teachers and academic leadership.

• Assist MSO Music Director in planning, programming, and executing Side-by-Side concert.

• Manage MYSP auditions for seating placement and section/principal assignments throughout the season as needed but at a minimum: three (3) seating audition rounds for strings, two (2) for woodwinds and brass, and one (1) for percussion each season.
• Coordinate with conductors of other MYSP ensembles as necessary or as directed.
• Other duties as assigned.


• Meaningful orchestral conducting experience and broad knowledge of orchestral repertoire and concert programming.
• Master’s degree (or equivalent) in orchestral/instrumental conducting strongly preferred.
• Fluent in English and able to communicate effectively to musicians, staff and a wide range of audience members.
• Candidate must be legally entitled to be employed in the U.S. at the time of application submission.
• Experience in and passion for conducting youth orchestras or other student ensembles is extremely desirable.
• Strong leadership and oral and written communication skills, particularly with young people.
• Exceptional organizational skills and management ability.


Candidates should submit the following: cover letter, CV, list of 5 professional references, and at least 2 video clips (3 preferred) demonstrating conducting abilities of both rehearsal and performance footage in contrasting repertoire styles by Friday 24 March 2017. Videos should be shot at close range of the conductor, taken from the orchestra’s vantage point, facing the FRONT of the conductor of either full symphonic or large chamber orchestral ensemble. Videos must be sent electronically with links and dates of rehearsals or performances (DropBox, Vimeo, YouTube, etc.)

Finalists will be notified by Friday 7 April 2017 if they have been selected to audition. The audition and interview process will require all finalists to be in Memphis from the evening of Wednesday 26 April until the afternoon of Saturday 29 April. Travel, accommodations, meals and all expenses related to the audition process are the sole responsibility of each candidate.

Salary commensurate with experience, plus health insurance, vacation, life insurance. Access to dental, 403(b), and disability.

Submission & Contact Information:

Websites:  http://www.MemphisSymphony.org

About the MSO: The Memphis Symphony Orchestra (MSO) exists to create meaningful experiences through music. We do this through artistic excellence, education, and community engagement and are the largest employer of musicians in Memphis and the Mid-South. Founded in 1952, the MSO is a vibrant civic enterprise involving more than 600 musicians, staff, and volunteers who engage more than 300,000 people throughout the Mid-South each year. The MSO has an annual budget of $3.7 million and performs at the acoustically splendid Cannon Center for the Performing Arts. Under the artistic leadership of Robert Moody, the Symphony employs 36 core musicians full-time, and additional 45 per-service contract musicians over 31 weeks. The Orchestra also encompasses a 11-person staff, the 120-member Memphis Symphony Chorus and the 300-member Memphis Symphony League. Memphis is a vibrant, growing city recently ranked in the top 5 of places for young college-educated individuals to begin their lives. Visit for more details.

About the MYSP: Founded in 1966, the Memphis Youth Symphony Program (MYSP) has evolved and grown in tandem with the MSO, achieving independent 501(c)(3) status a decade ago. Founding MSO Music Director Vincent DeFrank himself conducted the MYSP for 14 years and, since that time, a multitude of gifted conductors have put their unique signature on the program and inspired new generations of young musicians to embrace and participate in a wide spectrum of musical arts. The MYSP has four (4) performing orchestras, which each hold open membership auditions for every spring. Roughly 200 students from 50 different schools from across the Tri-State region participate every year.


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