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Dr. Michael Griffith

Professor, Director of Orchestral Activities
PA 3053
(307) 766-5242 | symph@uwyo.edu

"Conducted brilliantly and sensitively"

Cleveland News

"A conductor of grace and precision"

Boulder Daily Camera

"Led the orchestra with great sureness and clarity"

Estes Park Trial Gazette

"Audience rose for a prolonged standing ovation"

Ellesworth (Maine) American   

Now in his 29th year as Conductor of the University of Wyoming Symphony, Michael Griffith's guest conducting engagements have ranged from New York's Times Square to Rio de Janeiro and Goiânia, Brazil. Closer to home he's conducted Denver's Mercury Ensemble, the Ft. Collins Symphony, Cheyenne Symphony, Opera Fort Collins, Boulder's Colorado Music Festival, the Powder River Symphony, Longmont Symphony, and Broomfield Symphony. With younger musicians he has conducted All-State and other clinic ensembles in China, Canada, Colorado, Maryland, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, West Virginia, and Wyoming. He has also been a guest conductor at the University of Cincinnati, the University of North Carolina/Chapel Hill, University of Missouri, University of Delaware, Iowa State University, Pacific Lutheran University, Millikin University, Michigan State University, and the University of Colorado.

Dr. Griffith has frequently been lauded for his teaching. He's been a visiting professor at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland, and twice taught at China's Shanghai University. He was elected a Top Ten Teacher by two UW graduating classes, taught UW's London Semester, lectured at Brazil’s Federal University of Goiás, led four UW cultural tours of New York City, taught at UW’s Saturday University in Jackson Hole, was nominated for an Ellbogen Teaching Award, and received a "Thumbs-Up" award from the UW Arts & Sciences student council.

He is a past president of the Conductors Guild, a winner of an ASCAP/American Symphony Orchestra League Award for Adventurous Programming, and was a winner of The American Prize in concert programming. He has conducted 26 world premieres, and his UW Symphony was chosen as one of only three college orchestras to participate in the 2010 Ford Made in America commissioning program. In 2007 he led the UWSO on a week-long tour of Bolivia, and he conducted the UW Chamber Orchestra at the 2009 All-Northwest convention of the Music Educators National Conference. Broadcast performances include the Nigerian Broadcasting Company, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Minnesota Public Radio, Nebraska Public Radio, University of Illinois Public Radio, KUSF San Francisco, Wyoming Public Television, and Wyoming Public Radio. He has conducted performances with renowned guest artists such as Van Cliburn medalist Daniel Hsu, harpsichordist Igor Kipnis, pianist Christopher O'Riley, the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, and NY Philharmonic Principal Cellist Carter Brey.

Dr. Griffith inherited his musical talent from his grandmother Rose Brandt, a leading soprano in the Vienna Folksoper early in the 20th century. He grew up in Cleveland, where he studied oboe with Harvey McGuire and Robert Zupnic of The Cleveland Orchestra. His conducting teachers were Charles Bruck at the world-renowned Pierre Monteux School; Kenneth Bloomquist and Dennis Burkh at Michigan State University; and Giora Bernstein at the University of Colorado, where he earned his doctorate.

Dr. Griffith is a published composer and ASCAP member, and has contributed to the Conductors' Guild Journal, its Podium Notes Newsletter and New Music Panels, and to conferences of the College Music Society and the Wyoming Music Educators' Association. Equally at home in the orchestra pit as on the concert stage, Dr. Griffith has conducted operas, ballets, operettas, and musical comedies in Equity summer stock and URTA theatres, and many other venues throughout the Midwest and Rocky Mountain states. For ten years he was on the faculty of Michigan Tech University, serving as conductor of their Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra and Director of Bands.

UW Symphony Orchestra Association


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Department of Music

1000 E. University Avenue, Dept. 3037

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-5242

Fax: (307) 766-5326

Email: musicdpt@uwyo.edu

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