Robert Moody

Robert Moody

Music Director
The fourth Music Director in the 67 year history, Robert Moody is thrilled to serve in this, his 9th season with the Winston-Salem Symphony.Notable hallmarks of success during Maestro Moody’s tenure include unforgettable performances with superstars Renée Fleming, Itzhak Perlman, Van Cliburn, Robert McDuffie, Evelyn Glennie, Amy Grant, Christ Botti, and the Manhattan Transfer. He has overseen the creation of Pops, Kicked-back Classics, Discovery, Side-by-Side, and Handel’s Messiahconcert series. Under his tenure, the orchestra has also taken the Winston-Salem Youth Orchestra’s program completely under its umbrella, hired a full-time Associate Conductor, held a first-ever joint Classics concert with the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra, and released a compact disc recording of Beethoven Symphony No. 9. After a visit to Winston-Salem in 2007, League of American Orchestras immediate past President Henry Fogel pronounced the Winston-Salem Symphony, “…one of the very healthiest orchestras” he had visited in his tenure leading the League.Moody became the twelfth Music Director of the Portland Symphony Orchestra (Maine) in 2008. Highlights with the PSO have included multiple sold-out performances, a fully revamped “Magic of Christmas,” the creation of Discovery and Patriotic Pops concerts, and gala concerts with Renée Fleming and the U.S. Naval Academy Men’s Glee Club. Highlights of the upcoming Portland season include Mahler Symphony No. 5, Copland Symphony No. 3, and Elgar’s majestic “Enigma” Variations.

Additionally, Moody serves as Artistic Director of Arizona Musicfest, the nation’s premiere winter destination music festival, held in the north Scottsdalearea of Arizona. The Musicfest Festival Orchestra consists of members of some of the nation’s top orchestras (Chicago, Boston, Detroit, Seattle Symphonies; The Cleveland, Philadelphia, and Metropolitan Opera Orchestras; The Vienna Philharmonic, and many more). Maestro Moody leads this orchestra in four concerts programs each February. Highlights of the 2012 season include concerts with guest artist in residence and Metropolitan Opera star Denyce Graves, Alexander Nevsky with the Festival chorus, and the Beethoven violin concerto with Christoph Koncz of Red Violin fame.

Moody served as Associate, then Resident Conductor of the Phoenix Symphony (Arizona) from 1998 through 2006. There he conducted a wide variety of concerts, including Classics, Chamber, Pops, Family, Handel’s Messiah, and a New Year’s Eve gala. His casual manner and ability to speak with ease from the podium helped novices and enthusiasts alike gain a greater appreciation for orchestral music and made Bob a valley favorite – a relationship he enjoys withPhoenixto this day. Moody also founded the Phoenix Symphony Chorus and for seven years was Music Director of the Phoenix Symphony Youth Orchestra.

Prior to Phoenix, Maestro Moody served as Associate Conductor for the Evansville (Indiana) Philharmonic Orchestra, Music Director (and founder) of the Evansville Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, conductor for the Interschool Orchestras of New York (in Manhattan), and apprentice conductor for the Landestheater Opera House in Linz, Austria.

Born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina, Moody took up the cello in the public school system (Duncan Chapel Elementary) in the 4th grade. His voice and cello studies continued throughout high school (including three years of study at the Greenville County Fine Arts Center – one of the first public high schools for the arts in the nation) and took him to Furman University where he received a Bachelor’s Degree in Church Music, with performing emphasis in both voice and cello. He then completed his Master of Music Degree in Conducting at the Eastman School of Music inRochester,New York, where he studied with Donald Neuen.

Moody is a frequent guest conductor with orchestras across theUnited States. Guest conducting appearances in the 2012/2013 season include his European debut leading the Slovenian Philharmonic, as well as concerts with The Phoenix Symphony, Eugene (OR) Symphony, California Symphony, and the Maine All-State Orchestra festival. His lengthy resume of guest conducting in years past includes the symphony orchestras of Houston, Indianapolis, Detroit, Seattle, Pacific, Memphis, Oklahoma City, Ft. Worth, Virginia, San Antonio, Buffalo, Louisville, Stamford, Charleston, Naples, Anchorage, California, and many more. Summer festival appearances include Santa Fe Opera, Spoleto Festival USA,BrevardMusicCenter, Eastern Music Festival, PortOpera, Oregon Bach Festival, River Oaks Chamber Orchestra, Chautauqua, and Skaneateles Festival. Always energized to “pay it forward” to the next generation of musicians, Moody is proud to have led the All-State Orchestra festivals in Colorado, Maine, and Oklahoma.

Maestro Moody has conducted many of the world’s top classical and pops artists in concert. These have included: Yo Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, Renée Fleming, Van Cliburn, André Watts, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Dame Evelyn Glennie, Robert McDuffie, Lynne Harrell, Midori, Time for Three, Zuill Bailey, Ryan Anthony, Alexander Gavrilyuk, The Canadian Brass, Doc Severinsen, Celine Dion, The Manhattan Transfer, Martin Short, Chris Botti, Chris Thile, and many more.

A champion of new music, Moody is proud to have played an instrumental role in the commissioning and premiere performances of several important new works for orchestra. These include several works of composer Mason Bates: Free Variations for Orchestra, Ode, Rusty Air in Carolina, and Desert Transport, as well as the Sabar concerto for African Drum Ensemble and Orchestra, composed by James DeMars.

Moody’s work can be heard on five commercially released compact disc recordings. He collaborated with the Canadian Brass for their Bach and Legends CDs. He is also the conductor for the CD 4th World, highlighting the music of Native American recording artist R. Carlos Nakai (available on the Canyon Record label.) In 2010 the Winston-Salem Symphony released its live 2009 performance recording of Beethoven Symphony No. 9, and this year sees the release of his Beethoven Symphony No. 9 with the Arizona Musicfest Festival Orchestra and Chorus.

A strong believer in community growth and enrichment, Moody is a member of the Rotary Club of Winston-Salem, NC, and has served on the boards of the NW North Carolina YMCA and AIDs Care Services of Forsyth County. When not making music, one is most likely to find Robert Moody snow-skiing, hiking, running, or involved in other outdoor activities. He was a founding member of The Phoenix Symphony Running Club, completed his first marathon in 2004, and participates annually in both the “Mistletoe Half Marathon” in North Carolina and the “Beach to Beacon” 10K in Maine.

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