An adventurous professional ensemble founded by young freelance musicians in 2009, the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra now celebrates its Tenth Anniversary Season. SMCO's distinctive programming reaches out to diverse new listeners of all ages with unique musical experiences, featuring a unique mix of music for chamber orchestra and small ensemble of all eras with a significant presence of works by women and composers of color. The ensemble is dedicated to exploring the future of music, performing pieces that transcend genre, premiering new works, and crafting performances that tell the story of the human experience.
The SPARK Series ignites collaborations with DJs, visual artists, and artists of other musical genres for unique events in nightclubs and unexpected spaces. Secret Chamber Music brings intimate small-ensemble performances into homes, galleries, and other private locations. In SMCO's central orchestral series in Seattle concert halls, audiences experience the best music of the diverse world of the chamber orchestra, enhanced with verbal insights delivered from the stage.
Allion Salvador, Concertmaster
American conductor Geoffrey Larson is the founding Music Director of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra. He was selected as one of three finalists for the 2017 Respighi Prize in Conducting. He also serves as Assistant Conductor and Chorus Master of Berkshire Opera Festival in Massachusetts, where Opera News has praised his “precise choral work.” The Gathering Note has called Mr. Larson “an adroit leader who has a good understanding of musical shape, detail, and each piece’s greater message.” He is currently a doctoral candidate in conducting at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.
In the summer of 2016, he served as Assistant Conductor for two young artists opera productions in Prague, Czech Republic, including Mozart's Don Giovanni at the Estates Theatre, site of the work's premiere. He worked closely with directors Sherrill Milnes and Maria Zouves, and conductors John Nardolillo and James Burton. In 2014, he presented a lecture and complete performance of Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire at Pittsburgh Opera Studio. In the Pacific Northwest, Mr. Larson has appeared with ensembles such as the Bainbridge Symphony, Thalia Symphony, and Northwest Mahler Festival, and has served as Assistant Conductor of the Saratoga Orchestra of Whidbey Island. His opera credits include Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, Verdi’s Rigoletto, Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos, and Puccini's Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi.
Mr. Larson has given the world premieres of numerous works and has demonstrated a passion for new music, creating the ongoing Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra initiative to perform new works of rising young composers. He worked with composers Reza Vali and Huck Hodge to choose the winners of SMCO’s International Composition Competitions in 2014 and 2016. He has collaborated in performance with composers such as Erberk Eryılmaz, Nancy Galbraith, and Leonardo Balada.
Mr. Larson was a student of two-time Grammy Award winner Robert Page at Carnegie Mellon University, where he conducted performances and recording sessions of the Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic and Contemporary Music Ensemble. He was named a Fellow at the Bard Conductors Institute as the course’s youngest member in 2007, and joined three other young conductors in master classes at London’s Royal Academy of Music in 2008 at the personal selection of George Hurst. He has studied at the Pierre Monteux School under the tutelage of Michael Jinbo, and he studied opera conducting with Wolfgang Harrer for five months in Vienna, Austria. He additionally counts Peter Erös, Ronald Zollman, Raphael Jimenez, and Rodolfo Saglimbeni among his teachers in conducting. He has assisted conductors such as Uriel Segal, Ronald Zollman, Gerard Schwarz, and Brian Garman.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Steve Reeder, President
Kristin Bateman, Director
Marcia Johnson, Director
Robert Knoll, Director
Jessica Winter-Stoltzman, Director
Seth Tompkins, Ex-Officio Member
Program Director, Classical KING FM
Andrea Wilson, Business Manager
Aleida Gehrels, Development Officer, Librarian
Caroline Faflak, Librarian
Tricia Wu, Personnel Manager