SMU Meadows Music Alumna Michelle Merrill Wins Conducting Appointment With Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic
Recent grad was offered the position following national auditions in mid-September
Michelle Merrill (B.M. in Music Education and B.M. in Saxophone Performance, ’06, and M.M. in Music Education and M.M. in Orchestral Conducting, ’12), has been appointed Apprentice Conductor of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic. She was offered the position following national auditions in mid-September.
B.M. in Music Education and B.M. in Saxophone Performance, ’06, and M.M. in Music Education and M.M. in Orchestral Conducting, ’12
Lawrence Loh, music director of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, said, "Michelle is an exciting and talented young conductor who had a wonderful chemistry with the musicians of our orchestra. I was immediately impressed by her poise, presence and musicality. She was the top choice of the musicians and I look forward to working with her.”
The Apprentice Conductor position was created not only to expand the artistic staff of the Philharmonic, but to provide a training ground in a field where such opportunities are rare. “We are proud to support Michelle in this exciting new position with our orchestra!” said Loh.
At the Meadows School, Merrill served as assistant conductor of the Meadows Symphony Orchestra under Paul Phillips. She also worked with Voices of Change, a professional contemporary music ensemble in Dallas, during which time the ensemble was named as having one of the Dallas Morning News’ top 10 performances of 2011. Merrill was the only American among the four winners of the 2012 International Conductors Workshop and Competition, and in the summer of 2011 she was invited to conduct on a concert program with the Rochester Philharmonic featuring young talent. Over the past two years, she has had opportunities to conduct numerous other professional orchestras through various workshops and her work with conductors such as Marin Alsop, Gustav Meier, JoAnn Falletta and Neil Varon, among others.
The Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, celebrating its 41st season, was formed in 1972 through the merging of the Wilkes-Barre and Scranton Philharmonics. It is a fully professional symphony orchestra that services the entire northeast Pennsylvania corridor. Its annual concert season runs from July through May of each year, and includes masterworks, pops and educational concerts. A nonprofit corporation governed by a board of directors, the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic is considered one of the finest regional orchestras of its kind in the country, offering live symphonic performances to people of all ages.