Steven Amundson


Steven Amundson has led the St. Olaf Orchestra in over 400 performances since becoming its conductor in 1981. Under his direction, the orchestra has developed into an ensemble with few peers among colleges and universities in the United States. A professor of music, Amundson teaches conducting, music theory, and ear training. Before coming to St. Olaf, he held conducting positions at the University of Virginia and Tacoma Community College and served as music director of the Tacoma Youth Symphony. He is also the founding conductor of the Twin Cities-based Metropolitan Symphony, which he led for five years. Amundson has served as resident conductor and guest conductor at the Interlochen National Arts Camp and spent nine summers as the orchestra conductor for the Lutheran Music Program. From 1984 to 1997 he served as music director and conductor of the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra. He remains active as a guest conductor of community and professional ensembles in Minnesota. In addition to many performances with the Minneapolis Pops Orchestra, Amundson has had several conducting engagements with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and recently guest conducted the Duluth-Superior Fargo Moorhead Symphony Orchestras. He is a clinician and presenter at state and regional music conventions and an adjudicator for young artist competitions in the Midwest, and also a frequent conductor for All-State and Honors Orchestras throughout the United States. Amundson has led nearly 30 concert tours with the St. Olaf Orchestra. Under his baton, the orchestra has appeared in 26 states and eight countries in central and eastern Europe. In 2001, as part of its tour of the southwestern United States, the orchestra was featured at the Texas Music Educators? convention in San Antonio, and in the spring of 2005, the St. Olaf Orchestra toured throughout Norway. An active composer and arranger, Amundson is published by MMB Music and the Neil A. Kjos Music Company. Amundson’s self-published compositions are available through Tempo Music Resource. His compositions have received over 350 performances by university, civic and professional orchestras including the Akron, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Houston, Illinois, Jacksonville, Louisiana, Long Beach, Madison, New Mexico, Omaha, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tallahassee, Tacoma, and Virginia Symphonies. A 1977 graduate of Luther College, Amundson obtained the Master of Music degree in orchestral conducting at Northwestern University and did further studies at the University of Virginia, the Aspen Music School and the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria. He has enjoyed the tutelage of notable conductors, including Maurice Abravanel, Milan Horvat, Erich Leinsdorf and Bernard Rubenstein. In the 1980 International Conducting Competition sponsored by the Mozarteum and National Austrian Radio (ORF), Amundson placed first, earning the Hans Haring Prize. In 1992, the Minnesota Music Educators Association named him Orchestra Educator of the Year. In the fall of 1995, Luther College honored him with the Carlo A. Sperati Award for meritorious achievement in music. Amundson was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and grew up near Milwaukee, Wis. He is married to Jane Amundson, a secondary mathematics teacher and amateur cellist. They have two children, Beret and Karl.


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