Internationally Acclaimed Conductor Tito Muñoz Takes the Baton as Music Director of The Phoenix Symphony

02.21.14
Tito Munoz
The Phoenix Symphony

PHOENIX – Internationally acclaimed conductor Tito Muñoz has been appointed the new Virginia G. Piper Music Director of The Phoenix Symphony.

A native of New York, Muñoz comes to the podium most recently serving as Music Director of the Opéra National de Lorraine and the Orchestre symphonique et lyrique de Nancy in France. He will launch the Symphony’s 2014/15 Season this coming September.

"Today marks the beginning of an exciting partnership between the world class musicians of The Phoenix Symphony and one of the greatest young musical talents of our time," remarked Jim Ward, President and CEO of The Phoenix Symphony. "Tito represents the dynamic and exciting ability to advance the orchestral art form by celebrating the classical tradition but also experimenting with a more accessible 21st century approach. He will also help us achieve our overall vision of being the arts leader in the revitalization of Arizona as he understands the optimistic goals of our community at large."

As Music Director of The Phoenix Symphony, Muñoz is charged with overseeing the artistic development of the classical season programming, and providing leadership for all of the Symphony’s performance series.

"I am honored to be named the next Virginia G. Piper Music Director of The Phoenix Symphony.” says Music Director Tito Muñoz. “From our very first concerts together, I felt a fantastic chemistry with the musicians. Their passion and desire for excellence is truly inspiring. I also admire the orchestra's industry leadership and innovation, not only in its music making, but also in its Education and Community Engagement initiatives which align with my own commitment to working with our next generation of young artists. I am excited to begin a new chapter with The Phoenix Symphony and I look forward to joining this wonderful community."

As a guest conductor with The Phoenix Symphony for two Seasons, Muñoz brought audiences to their feet with breathtaking performances of Shostakovich's Tenth Symphony, Schumann's First Symphony, and Shostakovich’s First Violin Concerto featuring Concertmaster Steven Moeckel this past November.

“The orchestra musicians were looking for a conductor who can problem-solve both on and off the podium and someone who can provide the springboard for us to perform at the height of our abilities,” said Viviana Cumplido Wilson, Principal Flute and Music Director Search Committee member. “We wanted someone who can let loose and be inspired by the moment and the emotions coming off the stage and from the audience, and Tito Muñoz is exactly that person.”

An accomplished violinist, Muñoz began his musical training in the Juilliard School's Music Advancement Program. He attended the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art, "the FAME school" and attended the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen where he studied with David Zinman, Murry Sidlin and Leonard Slatkin. He was the winner of Aspen Music Festival's 2005 Robert J. Harth Conductor Prize and the 2006 Aspen Conducting Prize. Muñoz made his professional conducting debut in 2006 with the National Symphony Orchestra. That same year he made his Cleveland Orchestra debut at the Blossom Music Festival, served for three years as Assistant Conductor and maintains a close relationship with The Cleveland Orchestra where he has returned to conduct annually. He has gone on to conduct numerous symphony orchestras, operas and ballets around the world.

“I am thrilled Tito Muñoz will be the new Music Director of The Phoenix Symphony.” Says Greg Stanton, Mayor of the City of Phoenix. “Maestro Muñoz will continue the proud tradition of The Phoenix Symphony and its cultural and economic contribution to our region, and he will take the Symphony to a whole new level of artistic greatness. It is an exciting time for the City of Phoenix.”

The Symphony's official announcement took place this morning during the 2014/15 Annual Meeting and Season Launch which was attended by Muñoz, The Phoenix Symphony's Board of Directors, musicians and staff as well as donors and other community leaders and Symphony supporters.

“I am confident, after an extensive two and a half year search, that our musicians and Search Committee have found the right Music Director for our Symphony and for our community,” added C.A. Howlett, Chairman of The Phoenix Symphony Board of Directors. “Tito Muñoz is going to provide a new and energetic face for our Symphony and be well positioned to lead Arizona’s largest arts organization into the future. We welcome him and are excited to introduce him to our widely diverse and international community.”

To learn more about Tito Muñoz click here.
For more information about The Phoenix Symphony visit www.phoenixsymphony.org.