Robert Franz Conducts Italy’s Orchestra da Camera Fiorentina.
As Music Director of the Windsor Symphony Orchestra and the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival Orchestra, and Associate Conductor of the Houston Symphony, Robert Franz’s appeal as a first-rate conductor and enthusiastic award-winning educator is acclaimed by critics and composers. In increasing demand as a guest conductor, Franz’s recent appearances include The Cleveland Orchestra, the Baltimore, St. Louis and Victoria Symphonies, and the Orchestra da Camera Fiorentina in Italy. His guest conducting appearances for this season include the Winston-Salem Symphony, the Reno Chamber Orchestra and Opera Idaho.
In his eighth season as Windsor Symphony’s Music Director, Franz was recently recognized by The Windsor Endowment for the Arts with its Arts Leadership Award in Performing Arts. His work to grow a vibrant local arts community is evident by the partnerships he’s developed and fostered throughout the community as well as his versatility in programming.
Franz is celebrating his 13th season as Associate Conductor of the Houston Symphony where he was recently honored as the first member of the Symphony conducting staff with the Raphael Fliegel Award for Visionary Leadership. It was presented to Franz in recognition of his immense success in advancing the organization’s educational and community engagement activities. He continues to lead the Symphony in a broad range of creative educational and family concerts, including its summer neighborhood concert series, an outreach program dedicated to bringing music to all of Houston’s communities. During his tenure, attendance at family and educational concerts has almost doubled.
Driven to constantly develop artistically and expand his repertoire, Franz just finished his inaugural season as Artistic Advisor of the Boise Baroque Orchestra where historically informed performances are the driving force behind this new endeavor. Collaborations with Opera Idaho in a semi-staged performance of Handel’s Acis and Galatea featuring Grammy Award winning tenor, Karim Sulayman, the Boise High School Chamber Orchestra and the Boise Philharmonic Master Chorale in a program of music by Haydn and Bach are key to broadening the footprint of this ensemble’s vital work in the community. This spring will also see the Orchestra’s first ever commercial recording project of Classical Oboe Concerti for Centaur Records featuring rising star oboist Bhavani Kotha.
As Founder and Music Director of the Idaho Orchestra Institute, now in its second year, Franz oversees an intensive experience designed for college and advanced high school musicians.
ASCAP has recognized Franz on two occasions for his advocacy in arts education. Under his direction, both the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Louisville Orchestra were awarded the Leonard Bernstein Award for Educational Programming.