Allen Tinkham is increasingly recognized as one of the most inspiring and exciting conductors and teachers of his generation. He is hailed by the Chicago Tribune as both a conductor and teacher, described as working “wonders” as one of the most important "educators, mentors and inspirational guides in the training of tomorrow's orchestral professionals” and defined by his “communicative” conducting producing “an adrenalin rush of superior playing.”
Under his leadership as the longtime Music Director of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras (CYSO), both the Chicago Tribuneand Chicago Sun Timeshave described performances by the CYSO Symphony Orchestra as "professional level,"and under his baton, the Chicago Tribunehas noted his “impressive” conducting and “uncanny control” and has compared theCYSO Symphony Orchestra's"ferocity and theatricality"to that of the ChicagoSymphony Orchestra.
Now in his second season as Music Director of the Chicago Composers Orchestra (CCO), Chicago Magazine reflected at his appointment on his “well-respected” conducting tenure in Chicago and advocacy of contemporary music, and he was recently praised by the Chicago Classical Review for leading the seven year old orchestra to perform with the “cohesion of a long-established chamber group.”
To open the 2016/2017 season, Tinkham leads the CYSO Symphony Orchestra (CYSO) and the Chicago Composers Orchestra (CCO) at the first EAR TAXI Chicago Festival of New Music. Tinkham will perform nine premieres with CCO and two premieres as well as first performances of Elgar’s In the South and Resphigi’s Feste Romane with CYSO. To end the season, Tinkham leads the CYSO Symphony Orchestra throughout Central Europe in his sixth international tour.
Season highlights with CYSO also include performances with Rachel Barton Pine at the Midwest Clinic, CYSO Composer-in-Residence Glenn Kotche, and Google Tilt Brush Artist-in-Residence Teek van ti Mach. In addition to creating the annual gala and performance program, “0070th | Featuring the Music of James Bond,” to celebrate 70 years of CYSO music and featuring Rachel Barton Pine, Tinkham leads beyond the music for the first time as a gala co-chair to raise support for CYSO.
Tinkham and the CYSO Symphony Orchestra will be presented at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion Millennium Park in a kick off concert before embarking on a concert tour in June to Belgrade, Budapest, and Prague in a program including Tchaikovsky’s 6th Symphony. Tinkham and the orchestra will also collaborate in a side-by-side performance with the Symphony Orchestra of the Music High Schools of Prague.
Season highlights with CCO include three world premieres at the EAR TAXI Chicago Festival of New Music, a collaboration with the Chicago Composers Consortium, and a performance with pianist Marta Aznavoorian in the world premiere of Seth Boustead’s Piano Concerto No. 1. Works programmed in the CCO season also include Pulitzer Prize winners Bernard Rands and George Walker and over ten Chicago area composers.
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Music Director, Chicago Composers Orchestra | 2015-Music Director, Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras | 2001-Apprentice Conductor, Oregon Symphony Orchestra | 1999-2001
PRESS HIGHLIGHTS"He knows what he wants and how to get it." - Chicago Tribune
"...just as carefully chosen and beautifully executed as the rest of the programme...." - MUSO Magazine
"...very obviously an excellent conductor, with solid musical ideas and the ability to communicate those ideas...." - The Daily Telegram
"His vigorous, communicative baton brought forth an adrenalin rush of superior playing...." - Chicago Tribune
"Allen Tinkham, it is safe to predict, will one day...garner a major U.S. podium of his own." - Chicago Tribune
"Most impressive was the conductor's uncanny control...." - Chicago Tribune
PHOTO CREDIT: © Lad Strayer Photography