Tim Weiss

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About Tim Weiss

As director of the Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble, conductor Tim Weiss has been an important force in new American chamber music, inspiring the creation of several influential ensembles. In 2017 Weiss became Artistic Director of the Arctic Philharmonic in Bodø, Norway. A child of missionaries, Weiss was born in Papua New Guinea in 1967. His mother was a Lutheran church choir director and organist, and his first musical experiences came from watching and listening to her in action. Weiss spent his teenage years in San Diego, California, where he was often more interested in surfing than in music, but he attended the Royal Music Conservatory in Brussels, Belgium, and emerged with a first prize diploma in 1986. Weiss went on for a bachelor's degree in music at Northwestern University, graduating in 1990, and for a master's at the University of Michigan, which he received in 1997. Soon after that he was named conductor of the Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble, at Ohio's Oberlin College, and he built that position into one of considerable influence. Not only did he bring the ensemble to a high level of virtuosity and precision, he helped to create the ensembles Eighth Blackbird and ICE, also serving as conductor of the contemporary ensemble and as teacher at Colorado's Aspen Music Festival and School. With the Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble he has released several albums on the school's own Oberlin Music label, including, in 2018, Songtree: Music of Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon. Weiss has made guest conducting appearances with the BBC Scottish Symphony, the Melbourne Symphony, and other groups including the Arctic Philharmonic in Bodø, Norway, of which he was named Artistic Director (although not chief conductor) in 2017. He conducted that orchestra in a recording of Philip Glass' A Descent into the Maelstrom, released on Glass' Orange Mountain Music label in 2019. ~ James Manheim

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