Aram Demirjian is sought after as a conductor for his dynamic performances, insightful interpretations and charismatic rapport with audiences. American-born and of Armenian descent, Demirjian is Music Director of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and maintains an active guest conducting schedule, including frequent appearances with The Philadelphia Orchestra.
Recently completing his first season as Music Director Designate with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra (KSO), Demirjian is already leaving his mark on the region’s musical culture with creative programming, innovative collaborations and energetic community engagement, which has spurred substantial growth in concert attendance. He conducts 14 weeks on the upcoming KSO season, including partnerships with Appalachian Ballet, Knoxville Poet Laureate R.B. Morris and the genre-busting chamber group PROJECT Trio, plus repertoire ranging from Bach to Carmina burana to a world premiere KSO commission by American composer Michael Schachter.
Demirjian also enjoys numerous collaborations with The Philadelphia Orchestra, with which he conducted three family and education programs in the 2016-17 season and served as a cover conductor for Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Principal Guest Conductor Stéphane Denève. In 2017-18, Demirjian’s calendar includes two programs in Philadelphia at The Mann Center and Verizon Hall, debuts with the Detroit Symphony, Sarasota Orchestra and Orquesta Sinfónico de Minería, a re-engagement with the Omaha Symphony and a return to his alma mater to conduct the New England Conservatory Symphony. Past recent conducting highlights include Demirjian’s first appearances with the Minnesota Orchestra, St. Louis, Indianapolis and San Antonio symphonies, the Louisiana Philharmonic and the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra.
Demirjian is nationally recognized for his commitment to exploring new concert formats. As Associate Conductor of the Kansas City Symphony, he was instrumental in creating Classics Uncorked, a weeknight series that enhances the concert hall experience with thematic programming, narration, visual effects, musical demonstrations and audience interaction. In 2017, the League of American Orchestras awarded the Knoxville Symphony a distinguished Futures Fund Grant, in part to launch KSO UnStaged, an interactive, multisensory, music-based event series taking place in unconventional spaces throughout Knox County.
A champion of new music, Demirjian recently conducted the Southeast premiere and second-ever performance of Matthew Aucoin’s Evidence, a highlight of the 2017 Big Ears Festival. Demirjian was a guest conductor at the 2014 Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music and the 2013 Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music. He also has performed alongside Yo-Yo Ma and members of the Silk Road Ensemble on a Silk Road commission and has collaborated with John Adams in a performance and colloquium on Adams’ The Wound Dresser.
Demirjian is the recipient of a 2017 Solti Foundation U.S. Career Assistance Award and holds the 2011 Robert J. Harth Conducting Prize from the Aspen Music Festival, where he was a three-time Conducting Fellow in the Aspen Conducting Academy. He has appeared in masterclasses with renowned conductors including Bernard Haitink at the Lucerne Easter Festival and Kurt Masur at Manhattan School of Music. Demirjian holds a Bachelor of Arts in music and government from Harvard University and a Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting from New England Conservatory.
UPDATED JUNE 2017. PLEASE DISCARD ALL PREVIOUS MATERIALS.