Outgoing international music director lands university role

Miguel Harth-Bedoya, who is finishing terms as chief conductor of Norwegian Radio and music director of the Fort Worth Symphony, as been appointed director of orchestral studies at the University of Nebraska, Omaha.

The Peruvian maestro is 52.

It’s an unusual mid-career move.

 

 

Press release:

Harth-Bedoya will be charged with expanding and directing the orchestra program in the School of Music at the Strauss Performing Arts Center. His vision includes the creation of a brand new Bachelor of Music program in orchestral conducting, which is currently lacking at the undergraduate level in the United States.
“I am very excited to join the faculty of the UNO School of Music,” Harth-Bedoya states. “The school’s faculty are excellent teachers, performers and visionaries, the student body is eager to learn, and the program is led by a strong administration under Dr. Washington A. Garcia, Director of the UNO School of Music, and Dr. Michael L. Hilt, Dean of the College of Communication, Fine Arts and Media. The overall community is an inspiration. I am grateful that an institution of higher learning believes in the creation of a new undergraduate conducting program, which I know will be of great impact in the U.S.”

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  • fflambeau says:

    Why not? He’ll be in the front ranks now, will have a tenured position, and can do other things.

  • Anon says:

    “It’s an unusual mid-career move.”

    Beggars can’t be choosers.

    Good luck, UNO…you’re gonna need it.

    • Anonymous says:

      100%. I know the situation, although I am not affiliated with the institution in any way. He was appointed by admin and donors, very much against the wishes of faculty and students.

  • Norman Krieger says:

    Fantastic news!! Best wishes for great success!!

  • pjl says:

    I made a round trip of over 1,200 miles to hear him conduct the Chausson symphony in Glasgow; it was a great concert. His recordings are impressive also.

  • Patrick says:

    This move makes little sense. Omaha? Not Lincoln?

  • Kman says:

    I’m as confused as Patrick. For those not in the US, Nebraska-Omaha is not the flagship university in Nebraska (which is Nebraska-Lincoln). Further, there is nothing notable about the music programs at either campus.

    This isn’t like Andreas Delfs taking a faculty position at Temple University – still kind of weird, but at least it’s in Philly. Omaha, Nebraska is pretty isolated.

    There are plenty of great music programs in Texas that would offer a higher profile if he likes living in Texas.

  • Old Man in the Midwest says:

    Without knowing him or having performed under his direction, I can only guess that this is a personal choice especially if he has a young family.

    A job like this allows for security, a regular schedule and less travel. He can then pick and choose what concerts he wants to guest conduct.

    Of course he will have to live in Omaha, attend music department committee meetings, and learn to work with young students who all believe they deserve an “A” grade even if they don’t show up for rehearsals.

    Hope he likes steak. That may the best thing about the job.

    • CW says:

      His kids are older now and He has bee wanting to teach for a long time. It was just hard to convince institutions to offer an undergrad degree in conducting as he feels that a conductor’s training should start at a younger age and take longer than the current masters (usually 2 years) program.

  • Thomas says:

    Undergraduate conducting program? There’s a reason you don’t find these — especially at mid-level public universities.

    • Mario says:

      Indeed. Teaching someone to become a conductor before they’ve properly learned how to be a musician? Please…

  • Sol Siegel says:

    Oddly, I was just reading about the career of Pierre Monteux, who, among many other things, founded a conducting school and was mentor to a number of maestros who were dominant in the second half of the 20th Century. And Omaha’s airport would give him ready access to almost any podium engagement.

  • With all due respect to UNO, Chapman University Conservatory of Music currently has the only undergraduate conducting program in the United States.
    The program has been going strong for over 40 years with graduates matriculating into prestigious programs around the world. Recent graduates include Kalena Bovell, Assistant Conductor of the Memphis Symphony, Johannes Lohner, music director in Regensburg, Germany, and many others. (Just yesterday, our most recent graduate has been accepted to UCLA on full scholarship). Wishing Maestro Harth Bedoya continued success.

  • Larry says:

    A very unusual career move. There are any number of major music schools who would love to have someone like Miguel Harth-Bedoya.

  • MacroV says:

    I’m confused, too – Nebraska/Omaha? I kind of like Omaha from two brief visits, but the big school is in Lincoln, about an hour’s drive away. But a nice base salary while he takes some other gigs.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am not affiliated with that institution in any way, but I do know the situation. I can assure you he was appointed by admin and donors, against the wishes of the vast majority of faculty and students.

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