Ann Arbor loses conductor to ill-health

Ann Arbor loses conductor to ill-health


norman lebrecht

June 19, 2019

Message received:

Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra Board President Richard Hendricks and Executive Director Mary Steffek Blaske announced today that Arie Lipsky has stepped down from his current role as Music Director and Conductor of the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra. Lipsky joined the organization as Music Director in 2000 and has served as conductor for 19 seasons. Guest conductors have been secured for the A²SO’s 2019-2020 season and a national search for a new music director will be led by a search committee.

‘We are heartbroken for Arie that his very difficult health struggles in the last six months have led him to this decision,’ said A²SO Board President Richard Hendricks. ‘His resignation was yet another act of leadership, and we accepted his decision in that same spirit. We owe him our sincerest gratitude for the amazing work he has done over the years to elevate our Symphony to its current highest-ever-quality, both in its music-making and in the breadth and depth of its educational enrichment and community engagement.’



  • anon says:

    A big loss for the orchestra and community–a man who fought long and hard against a difficult situation. The A2SO does seven concerts a year, yet the U of M school of music, like many others across the country, cranks out music grads like a factory.

    • Luigi Nonono says:

      It’s a small city. That’s fine for musicians with second careers, which many have, or have to have. What’s bad is ones that are more or less full-time, yet hire per-service.

  • Jaime Herrera says:

    I was not aware of Maestro Lipsky’s situation (I have not seen him in years) and I wish him the best. Sad turn of events this is.

  • Doug says:

    FYI: they are also seeking a new executive director at the moment. His/her first job will be to begin the search process for a new music director. Good luck!

    • drummerman says:

      I know. I’ve applied for the ED job and actually have experience in managing a music director search.

  • Luigi Nonono says:

    Why should he have to resign? They should be taking care of him. Musicians who become seriously ill fall off the map instead of being cared for. Where are there retirement homes for musicians? Sanatoriums? Tom Nyfenger is the only one I know of who was able to keep working while ill.