News and Announcements from the MPO
The Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra is pleased to announce that Dr. Brian Edward Dowdy has been appointed as its sixth artistic director and principal conductor of the ensemble, which is America’s first and oldest gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, and allied symphonic orchestra. We are confident that Dr. Dowdy will lead the MPO to another level of artistic and musical excellence. He brings a wealth of knowledge from conducting, building orchestras, growing audiences, and leadership development. He has valuable regional connections in the broader music community, based on his recent work with the Mississippi Valley Orchestra and multiple orchestras at the University of Minnesota, as well as his ongoing relationship with the St. Cloud Symphony Orchestra He brings a commitment to collaboration with other ensembles and is dedicated to MPO’s mission of promoting music by women, persons of color, GLBTQA, and other underrepresented composers.
Dowdy stated, “I am incredibly excited about this new artistic partnership with the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra. I look forward to working with these wonderful musicians and building relationships with supporters and audience members. When I moved to the Twin Cities in 2013, I quickly learned of the Philharmonic and was inspired by its commitments to inclusivity, diverse programming and musical excellence. I’m honored to be appointed the new Artistic Director and Principal Conductor, and I can hardly wait to begin rehearsals this Fall!”
In May 2017, Dr. Dowdy completed his doctoral studies at the University of Minnesota, where he was a James Sample Fellow, director of Campus Orchestras and Summer Orchestra conductor. With University of Minnesota Opera Theater and Twin Cities Fringe Opera, Dowdy has led performances of Don Giovanni, Hänsel und Gretel, Susannah, Le tragédie de Carmen and The Rape of Lucretia. Also passionate about choral music, Dowdy recently directed and sang in “Pesher Compline” at the Walker Art Center with members of the renowned vocal ensemble, Cantus, and in 2012 he joined the Sanctuary choir of Richmond, VA in recording Music for Compline, an album of plainchant and renaissance motets. As an advocate for new music, Dowdy has led premier performances for the Switchboard Music Festival and Hot Air Music Festival in San Francisco, and in 2013 he conducted the Atlantic Chamber Ensemble in “Project Beck,” a night of 20 premiers inspired by Beck Hansen’s Song Reader. Dowdy began his musical studies at Oberlin and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and now resides in Minneapolis.
Back to top
Join us for our 2016-17 season premiere concert: Two if by Sea
Tickets still available, box office opens at 6:30 pm!
Back to top
A year ago this month, Chan Poling’s song “Love Is The Law” became the de facto anthem of the Marriage Equality movement, which reached its apotheosis with Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton uttering that song’s refrain upon his signing of the historic amendment. Tonight the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra debuts Mr. Poling’s Symphonic Celebration: “Love Is…” based on his band’s beloved song – with orchestrations by Mr. Poling and the supremely talented Robert Elhai.
Chan Poling is a Minnesota based pop songwriter and composer of theatrical and film scores. His alternative rock band, The Suburbs, got their first recording contract in 1977 and became a touchstone of the “Minneapolis Sound”. Many of his songs have made the international pop music charts and have been used in films, television shows and advertising.
He also has written the musical scores for a variety of independent feature films, theater productions, and documentaries (most recently the documentary “Fritz” celebrating his father-in-law, former Vice President Walter Mondale). In 2005 he formed the cabaret trio The New Standards, which regularly performs around the world and whose annual Holiday Show is a perennial favorite. Among many honors for his work, including an Emmy and a Cine Golden Eagle for his scores, the Minnesota Music Awards recognized Chan with their lifetime “POP” (Perpetually Outstanding Performer) Award.
ROBERT ELHAI (arr/orchestration) is a Tony and Drama Desk nominee for his orchestrations and arrangements for the Broadway production of The Lion King, he orchestrated the recent Los Angeles Opera and New York’s Lincoln Center Festival production of Elliot Goldenthal and Julie Taymor’s opera Grendel. Among the some 120 feature films he has contributed orchestrations to are the upcoming Iron Man 3, the third and fourth Batman movies, Across The Universe, The Sixth Sense, the first Pirates of the Caribbean, and the Oscar-winning score for Frida,. His arrangements for Metallica’s Grammy Award-winning “S&M” made good use of his doctorate in composition from Yale University.(He also holds degrees from Carleton College and the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati.) He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and two sons.
Back to top
This performance was recorded on March 14th, 2010 by Twin Cities Public Television for their MN Original television program!
The segment MN Original produced about the Minnesota Philharmonic is available on their web site. Thank you, MN Original!
Back to top
We’re being televised!
If you attended our winter concert this year, you may have noticed the television cameras around the house. That performance (and some rehearsals earlier) were taped for use in a segment on Twin Cities Public Television’s weekly arts program MN Original.
Our story will be aired on several dates, so you may have to work hard to miss it!
- Thursday, June 3rd at 7:30 pm on TPT2
- Saturday, June 5th at 6:30 pm on the statewide MN Channel
- Sunday, June 6th at 6pm on tptLIFE
In addition, the full episode will be posted on MN Original’s web site, along with additional content, web exclusive videos, and background information!
Check out the MN Original program, featuring the Minnesota Philharmonic!
Back to top
The Minnesota Philharmonic and composer Sarah Miller were highlighted in the Minnesota Women’s Press for our concert in November of 2009. The article talks about our collaboration with the composer to put together the orchestrated version of ‘She Just Wants.’
She Just Wants — Minnesota Women’s Press.
Back to top
Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO), the first GLBT orchestra in America, will be spoiling us with a blissful spring concert, Hit Parade, on May 30, 7:30 PM, at Hamline University’s Sundin Hall.
For the May performance, MPO will welcome violinist Andrew Sords, who will perform Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in D Major. Also included in the concert are Franz Schubert’s Overture in C Major (D. 591) and Ludwig von Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 in A Major.
During Sords’s first visit to the state, he will reprise his performance with MPO at the Queer Music Consortium’s annual free concert on June 1, 7 PM, at Como Park Pavilion. In addition, he will give demonstrations for elementary students in select St. Paul and Minneapolis schools.
Carisa Sibbet, Lavender Magazine
Read the full article! Sords To Perform with Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra
Back to top