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UW’s Michael Griffith Places Third in National Competition

January 19, 2016
man in white tie and tails with baton raised conducting an orchestra
Michael Griffith, UW director of orchestral activities, won third place in a recent national competition for conductors. (UW Photo)

Michael Griffith, University of Wyoming director of orchestral activities and a Department of Music professor, won third place in a recent national competition for conductors.

The American Prize-Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award in Orchestral Programming recognizes and rewards the best achievement in the unique field of orchestral programming, where “the selection of repertoire by knowledgeable, creative and courageous music directors builds orchestras and audiences, educates young people and adults, and enriches the community.”

The award honors the late Lithuanian conductor Vytautas Marijosius, music director of the Lithuanian State Opera and director of orchestral activities at the Hartt School of Music for nearly 35 years.

Griffith placed third in the college/university orchestras division of the 2015 competition. Other divisions were community orchestras and youth orchestras.

Now in his 27th year as UW Symphony conductor, Griffith offers a wide repertoire ranging from the early Baroque to world premieres. He has guest conducted at various locations throughout the United States and abroad including New York’s Times Square, Rio de Janeiro and the Colorado Front Range. He is a past president of the Conductors Guild and a winner of an ASCAP Adventurous Programming Award.

Additionally, he has twice been elected a UW “Top 10” teacher; taught UW’s London Semester; and served as a visiting professor at Finland’s Sibelius Academy. He studied at the world-renowned Pierre Monteux School in Maine, at Michigan State University and at the University of Colorado, where he earned his doctorate.

The American Prize is a series of new, nonprofit national competitions in the performing arts unique in scope and structure; providing cash awards; professional adjudication; and regional, national and international recognition.

Each year, The American Prize rewards the best recorded performances by individual artists and ensembles in the United States at the professional, community/amateur, college, university, church and school levels.

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