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BPO: Stefan Sanders signs three-year contract extension, gets promoted to resident conductor

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Fri, Sep 16th 2016 04:55 pm

Stefan Sanders will be with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra for another three years.

Sanders won the job of associate conductor in 2014 after a yearlong selection process. He had formerly been a member of the orchestra's trombone section before turning to conducting.

He studied at The Juilliard School, the University of Texas at Austin, and at the Aspen Music Festival's American Academy of Conducting. This spring, he was one of only five chosen from an international field for the League of American Orchestras Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview in Nashville, with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra.

Under his leadership, the Music For Youth and BlueCross BlueShield BPO Kids series have reached new artistic heights and found larger audiences. Sanders appears frequently on the Pops and Classics podiums, leading such memorable concerts as "Pink Martini" and "Cirque Mechanics," as well as April's "Grant US Peace Classics" concert and this summer's outdoor community concerts. His "Copland's America" and "Holst's Planets" "Know The Score" concerts were among the best-attended in the history of the series. He led the 2015 "Soundwave" concert, which featured cutting-edge classical music paired with the music of local bands The Albrights and Babik charted for orchestra.

In addition to his leadership of the BPO, Sanders is also music director for the Round Rock Symphony. He has served as music director for the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra and, this season, will take the helm of the Amherst Symphony Orchestra, a community orchestra.

"Serving as the BPO's associate conductor for the past two years has been sort of a homecoming for me," Sanders said. "It's been such a great experience being back with the BPO and living in Buffalo during these exciting times. I'm proud of what I've been able to achieve in the past two years, and extending my stay here was an easy decision. I look forward to working with (conductor) JoAnn Falletta, the orchestra musicians and staff, and what the next three years have to hold!"

Falletta said, "In Stefan, we have found a musical colleague that truly fits our orchestra and our community. He has done fantastic work for the BPO over the past two years as associate conductor, and we are delighted he has agreed to extend his stay for another three years. His leadership on and off the podium is exemplary, and his new title reflects not only his artistic achievement, but the fact he is embedded in Western New York."

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