Boston Philharmonic announces two new Fellows for 2015-16

Jun 8, 2015 10:11:00 AM / by BPO Staff

Thomas Jung Named as eleventh Zander Fellow at the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra

From an applicant pool of over forty submissions, Thomas Jung has been selected as the BPO’s new Zander Fellow.

About Thomas Jung:

Thomas Jung is the Conductor and Music Director of the Flora Sinfonie Orchester Cologne, Germany, the Chief Conductor of the Studio Orchester Duisburg and Guest Conductor of the Tianjin Grand Opera Symphony Orchestra in China.

Thomas Jung studied at the Hochschule für Musik Cologne, at the University of Cambridge and King's College Cambridge. He studied conducting under Volker Wangenheim, rounding off his training with masterclasses with Bernard Haitink, Colin Metters, Jorma Panula and Benjamin Zander. Thomas Jung is a fellow of the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes, the DEY Foundation, the Music Foundation of the Kreissparkasse and a conducting fellow of the Richard Wagner Association.

In autumn 2012 Thomas Jung received the Culture Prize of the Philippas Engel Foundation for his social and cultural commitment to music, with music and through music. That same year he was awarded first prize and special prize “Best Performance” in the German Orchestra Competition.

In 2012 Thomas Jung founded the Flora Sinfonie Orchester Cologne and was elected Chief Conductor of the Studio Orchester Duisburg. From 2009 until 2012 he was the Music Dirctor of the Klettenberger Kammerorchester Cologne. In the 2010/11 season Thomas Jung was the Music Director of the production Moses muss singen at the Opera House of Münster.

As assistant Thomas Jung worked together with Semyon Bychkov (WDR Sinfonieorchester), Markus Stenz (Gürzenich-Orchester), Gustavo Duda- mel (Gürzenich-Orchester) and was invited by Bernard Haitink for his re- hearsals with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe in June 2013 (Brahms: Symphony Cycle), all his rehearsals with the Sinfonieorchester des Baye- rischen Rundfunks in December 2013 (Haydn: The Creation) and all his rehearsals with the Berliner Philharmoniker in March 2014 and 2015.

In 2009 Thomas Jung recorded the Tauwetter score, a film project of students of the Academy of Media Arts Cologne, with the Junges Ensemble für Neue Musik, which he had founded in 2007 to enable the performances of pieces written by students of the composition department of the Hochschule für Musik Cologne. With this Orchestra Thomas Jung conducted more than 20 world premieres between 2007 and 2010. During that time he as a conductor was a member of the class of composer York Höller.

Thomas has had personal encounters with Karlheinz Stockhausen, John Adams, Sofia Gubaidulina, Peter Eötvös, Kurt Masur, Alfred Brendel and Emauel Ax that have brought invaluable musical inspiration and growth.

For further information visit:

About the Zander Fellowship:

The Zander Fellowship was initiated on the occasion of Benjamin Zander’s 60th birthday, when the Board of the Boston Philharmonic voted to mark the occasion by endowing a Fellowship for a young conductor to spend a year tracking, supporting and emulating Maestro Zander in the tradition of the ancient master/apprenticeship relationships that were commonplace during the Renaissance.

The Zander Fellow is invited to participate in all aspects of the Boston Philharmonic and the Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra’s life, as well as attending meetings of the Board and staff in order to gain an insight into the workings of this unique organization.

There is exciting news from several of the former Fellows. James Gaffigan (2000-01) is conductor of the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra and has one of the busiest careers as a guest conductor of the younger generation of international conductors. Sameer Patel (2010-11) has just been named Assistant Conductor of the San Diego Symphony. The most recent Fellow, James Blachly, just completed a two-year stint (2013-15) as ZF with a critically acclaimed performance of a Sullivan Opera at Odyssy Opera. Ben Vickers (2011-13) has just become Music Director and conductor of two local orchestras and was Assistant Conductor on the recent performance of the opera Crossing by Matthew Aucoin. John Page (2003-05) and Christopher Lees (2006-07) have recently been appointed Music Director of the Orchestra Programs of Tufts University and the North Carolina School of the Arts respectively. Levi Hammer (2009-10) is completing a highly successful 4 year stint as Assistant Conductor of the Akron Symphony and Music Director of the Akron Youth Orchestra. And Courtney Lewis (2007-09) is currently Assistant Conductor of the New York Philharmonic.

* * *

Kristo Kondakci named as second Boston Philharmonic Fellow

About Kristo Kondacki:

23-year-old conductor Kristo Kondakci has acquired wide-ranging musical skills and an impressive list of accomplishments. Based in Boston, Kristo has assisted Benjamin Zander in numerous performances and projects, providing both musical and technical support. In March of 2015, he traveled with Maestro Zander to Kuala Lumpur, assisting in concerts and masterclasses with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.

Kristo made his conducting debut with the Albanian National Orchestra in the fall of 2014, an appearance that led to his immediate reengagement, and to his appointment as Principal Guest Conductor of the orchestra. He was recently appointed Assistant Conductor of the Boston Landmarks Orchestra, a professional orchestra committed to making great music available to audiences across ethnic, economic and cultural boundaries.

Kristo has made a significant contribution to Mahler research through his reconstruction of the original version of Mahler's 1st Symphony. His new edition is now being prepared for publication. He has assisted his teacher, composer Michael Gandolfi—among other Boston based composers—in the preparation and publishing of new works. He has also managed and edited video recording for many performances and events in the Boston area, including performances by the orchestras of the New England Conservatory.

In 2014, Kristo founded the Eureka Orchestra, an ensemble that promotes the greatest possible access to orchestral music through concerts and interactive outreach events. He has guest conducted the Harvard River Charles Ensemble on several occasions, most recently in a performance of works by Beethoven and Tchaikovsky as a part of Harvard’s ArtsFirst Festival. He has also worked as an assistant conductor for the Cambridge Symphony Orchestra.

Kristo holds a Master’s Degree in Conducting (2015) and a Bachelor's Degree in Composition from the New England Conservatory (2013). He graduated from the prestigious Boston College High School in 2009. At the New England Conservatory, Kristo was named a Beneficent Society Scholar (2013), NEC's Scholarship Star (2012), and was awarded the Composition Department Prize at the Preparatory Division in 2009.

For more information visit:

About the Boston Philharmonic Fellowship:

Established two years ago to strengthen the BPO’s outreach and engagement programs, this year the BPO Fellowship will expand its focus to audience development; the establishment of a program to preserve Ben Zander’s legacy; the organization, recording and internet distribution of the Zander Master Class series; and the development of programs surrounding the Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra.

Outgoing BPO Fellow Danielle Williams will be continuing to pursue her career as a music educator next year. During her two-year tenure at the Boston Philharmonic, Danielle conducted extensive outreach and program coordination for the BPO'sCrescendo! education and engagement programs. Through her efforts, the classroom education component grew at an astounding rate from two participating schools to 12! At this season's end, Crescendo teaching artists from BPO & BPYO provided more than 900 hours of service to our community and taught 600 students weekly through instrumental mentoring and after-school music classes, under Danielle's leadership. Additionally, she coordinated and composed a piece for the highly successful third annual Greater Boston El Sistema Showcase, where 13 programs and 400 young musicians participated, and has established a new program for our youngest audience members in the Kids' Notes Upbeat! pre-concert talks for children. The Crescendo! work will be led next season by Alexander Goodin, who will join the staff in the fall after serving as Crescendo's intern in the 2014-15 season.

Topics: News

Written by BPO Staff

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