The Frost School of Music at the University of Miami has appointed Gerard Schwarz as Distinguished Professor of Music; Conducting and Orchestral Studies. The announcement was made by Shelton G. Berg, Dean of the Frost School of Music. Schwarz will assume his position in the fall of 2019, and he will be a full-time member of the faculty as Professor of Practice in the Department of Instrumental Performance.
Internationally recognized for his moving performances, innovative programming and extensive catalog of recordings, Gerard Schwarz is Conductor Laureate of the Seattle Symphony, and Music Director of the All-Star Orchestra, Eastern Music Festival, the Mozart Orchestra of New York, and Conductor Emeritus of New York’s Mostly Mozart Festival. He has recorded over 350 albums as a conductor and has received 6 Emmy awards, 14 Grammy nominations, 8 ASCAP Awards, and numerous other accolades. He is a noted composer, and also has 6 million enrollees in his courseware with the All-Star Orchestra for the Khan Academy. A champion of new music, Schwarz has conducted more than 300 world premieres. Maestro Schwarz also played a leading role in the creation of Seattle Symphony’s Benaroya Hall. His much-anticipated memoir, Gerard Schwarz: Behind the Baton, was published by Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group in March 2017.
“We are ecstatic to welcome the esteemed Gerard Schwarz to the Frost School”, says Dean Berg. “He is a tour de force as a conductor, musician, composer and recording artist. As an educator, Maestro Schwarz personifies our Frost Method Curriculum®, which holistically trains musical leaders for the 21st Century. An embodiment of excellence, Gerard has created iconic organizations and raised the bar everywhere he has been. I have no doubt that working with our world-class colleagues, he will help us achieve new heights.”
“Shelly Berg, the Dean at the Frost School of Music, has created a unique musical and educational environment, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to join him and the superb faculty to support the great artistic leaders of the future,” Schwarz said. “Music education, for professionals and audiences alike, has been a guiding force and passion in my life, and I look forward to bringing that commitment to the Frost School under the mission of creative innovation and artistic excellence.”
Regarding new initiatives Maestro Schwarz plans for his position, Schwarz comments:
“I hope I will be able to continue and add to the growth of this wonderful school of music. My ideas for the orchestral/educational program are ones that are already embraced by faculty. Specifically, I would like to expand the graduate conducting program to train conductors, who will lead ensembles of all levels. I have always believed in the interaction of the community with an orchestra or school and I would like to expand this initiative with the Frost Symphony Orchestra. Shelly Berg, Robert Carnochan, Conductor of the Frost Wind Ensemble and Chair of Instrumental Performance, and I have already begun discussion of annual festivals beginning with a festival around 20th century American music. Of course, programming for the Frost Symphony Orchestra is very much on my mind and I think of this in three distinct areas: the most important works of the great repertoire of the past; works that have proven to be excellent of the 20th century that need exposure; and new works.”
Gerard Schwarz succeeds Thomas Sleeper, who conducted the Frost Symphony Orchestra with distinction for 25 years. The Frost Symphony Orchestra maintains an active performance schedule, on campus and beyond. Frost School orchestras have long had the distinction of performing with some of the most celebrated conductors and soloists from around the world including Pierre Monteux, Leopold Stokowski, Gregor Piatigorsky, Jasha Heifitz, and Arthur Rubenstein. In recent years that tradition has continued to include Joshua Bell, Edgar Meyer, Jennifer Koh, Dawn Upshaw, Eric Owens, James Newton Howard, Bobby McFerrin, Cristian Macelaru, Simone Dinnerstein, and many others. American Record Guide called the world premiere of Surinach's Symphonic Melismas, "The most auspicious premiere by the UM Symphony since 1956 when Andre Kostelanitz conducted the premiere of William Schuman's New England Triptych here."
The FSO and Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra have released recordings with Sony Music, Concord, Centaur, Cane and Albany Labels with excellent reviews. Former members of the FSO hold positions in prestigious ensembles and serve as arts administrators, teachers, conductors throughout the world.
Read the announcement from The Frost School of Music here.