Indiana University

News Release

Friday, October 27, 2006

Last modified: Friday, October 27, 2006

Leonard Slatkin to join faculty at IU Jacobs School of Music

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Oct. 27, 2006

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Following a number of guest appearances at the Indiana University Summer Music Festival, internationally recognized American conductor Leonard Slatkin has decided to make the IU Jacobs School of Music his academic home, it was announced today (Oct. 27).

Slatkin's active conducting career includes his positions as music director of the National Symphony Orchestra and newly appointed music advisor (for a three-season term) to the Nashville Symphony Orchestra. He also is principal guest conductor of both the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl. Slatkin, a five-time Grammy Award-winner, will be named the Arthur R. Metz Foundation Conductor at the Jacobs School.

"During the past two summers, I had the pleasure of working with the (IU Summer Music) Festival Orchestra at the university. They so impressed me, as did the dedication of the faculty and staff, that it seemed logical to develop a further association," Slatkin said.

"Working with young musicians has always been something at the forefront of my own agenda," he added. "The opportunity of teaching, conducting and developing new concepts in music education is something I have been considering for a long time."

Jacobs School of Music Dean Gwyn Richards said, "Leonard Slatkin is universally admired in our profession for his commitment to the highest of artistic standards, to the education of musicians and to the music of our time. We are honored to have him join us at Indiana University."

"Reflective of the broad musical profile he has established, his presence in the IU Jacobs School of Music will reach nearly every department," Richards continued. "As he has so much to contribute to the coming generations of artist-teachers, composers and conductors, his time will be spent with many types of students. The scope of our school and the range of his interests seem a perfect match."

Slatkin will begin his involvement at the Jacobs School in 2007-2008 through residencies of several weeks in which he will conduct student orchestras and work intensively with instrumental conducting and composition students.

He is one of a number of high-profile artist-teachers to join the IU music faculty in just the last three years. Other notables are pianists André Watts and Arnaldo Cohen, singers Sylvia McNair, Marietta Simpson and Carol Vaness, ballet master Michael Vernon, violinists Mark Kaplan, Jaime Laredo and Alexander Kerr, and cellist Sharon Robinson.

Slatkin's 2006-2007 guest conducting appearances include the Toronto Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, National Arts Center in Ottawa and the symphony orchestras of Detroit and Nashville, Tenn., where he will also guest conduct in 2007-2008. His other engagements include the New York Philharmonic and the orchestras of Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco and St. Louis.

Following a successful tenure as music director of the Saint Louis Symphony from 1979 until 1996, Slatkin was named Conductor Laureate. He has also served as festival director of the Cleveland Orchestra's Blossom Festival (1990-1999), principal guest conductor of the Philharmonia Orchestra (1997-2000) and chief conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra (2000-2004).

Slatkin has made regular appearances with virtually every major international orchestra, including the New York Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam, Boston Symphony Orchestra and many others. His performances of opera have taken him to leading opera companies in the U.S. and around the world, including the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera and Vienna State Opera.

His more than 100 recordings have been recognized with five Grammy awards and more than 50 other Grammy nominations. He has recorded with the National Symphony Orchestra, Saint Louis Symphony, Philharmonia Orchestra, London Philharmonic, BBC Symphony Orchestra, London Symphony and Bayerischer Rundfunk Orchestra.

Throughout his career, Slatkin has demonstrated a continuing commitment to arts education and to reaching diverse audiences. He is the founder and director of the National Conducting Institute, an advanced career development program for rising conductors. Through the National Symphony Orchestra's American Residencies project, in which the NSO visits a different state each year, Slatkin has worked with student ensembles and conductors in 11 states. Additionally, he founded the Saint Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra and also has worked with student orchestras across the U.S.

He has received many honors and awards, including the 2003 National Medal of Arts, which is the highest award given to artists by the United States government.

Slatkin will join Thomas Baldner, David Effron and Uriel Segal in the Department of Instrumental Conducting. A search is underway for an additional full-time instrumental conductor who will work with the school's six major orchestras.

Media interested in interviewing Slatkin or Richards are asked to contact Ryan Piurek, IU Media Relations, 812-855-5393 or, or Alain Barker, IU Jacobs School of Music, at 812-856-5719 or

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