Karen Smuda Emerging Conductor Program

Mission Statement:

The Peninsula Music Festival’s Karen Smuda Emerging Conductor Program will provide training and exposure for aspiring conductors with a professional orchestra. The program's intention is to provide broad experience with all aspects of orchestra conducting and management to enhance their career goals.


  • Professional Resume
  • Undergraduate degree in music performance
  • Masters in conducting
  • Currently enrolled or recently completed a Doctoral Program in Conducting
  • Flexibility, adaptability, able to work under pressure, self motivated
  • Good communication skills

Other Considerations:

  • Current/Valid drivers license
  • Dependable car
  • Housing and small stipend provided

Job Description: Supervised by the Music Director

  • Artistic Responsibilities:

    • Be available to the Music Director
      • Observe all rehearsals and give input as requested
      • Attend all concerts
      • Conduct an overture on a concert - lead rehearsals for the piece
      • Collaborate on the season previews (talking program notes)
    • Be available to the Music Librarian
      • Assist with distribution and collection of parts
      • Assist with bowings
    • Be available to work with community and youth music programs dependent on summer schedule
  • Administrative Skills Exposure:

    • Shadow administrative staff for exposure to:
      • Business Operation
      • Fundraising
      • Marketing and Public Relations
      • Community Relations
      • Box Office
      • Crisis Management

A small stipend, plus housing is provided for those selected for the program. Parrticipation for those selected will range from one to three weeks, depending on the number and quality of the applications. Those interested in the August 2019 season, the application procedure is as follows:

Application Procedure

Please read the criteria for the Emerging Conductor Program before applying. Only applications that meet the criteria will be reviewed. Applications will only be accepted by email to the email address provided.

Send an email to emergingconductor@musicfestival.com with the following information and attachments:

Full contact information including full name, current physical address, email and cell phone number. Include in the email the YouTube URL for the Conductor Excerpt Video.


1. Cover letter that addresses the qualifications outlined above

2. Resume that includes, where applicable, principal/other current conducting positions, previous conducting positions, guest conductor engagements, education background and current level and enrollment, principal performance instrument, conducting teachers, conducting workshops or seminars, conducting awards.

3. Three letters of recommendation from those who are familiar with your conducting including phone and email contacts for each

Save all of these items as either a DOC, DOCX or PDF using this naming convention for the file names:

Conductor Excerpt Video Submission Guidelines:

Please upload video excerpts online to Youtube. If you don't already have online excerpts, we recommend setting up an account with YouTube. Video excerpts should be clearly titled with applicant's name, composer name, work, and movement. The video may be unlisted and the URL submitted in the letter as described above.

Applicants should present 2 excerpts of contrasting standard repertoire demonstrating a variety of styles and tempi. Complete movements are preferred. Videos submissions should be no less than ten minutes and should not exceed twenty minutes in length. Filming should be done from the back of the orchestra with the focus on the front of the conductor with clear baton/body visibility. Think about microphone placement so as to record the best sound. Concert performance footage is preferred rather than rehearsal. No audiovisual displays before the segment begins - no promotional video please.

Application Deadline: December 14, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified by January 25, 2019 about their acceptance into the program.

Please explore the Peninsula Music Festival's website for further information on the organization: www.musicfestival.com

Peninsula Music Festival, PO Box 340, Ephraim, WI 54211, 920-854-4060

August Symphony Series performance location

Door Community Auditorium - Fish Creek 

The Peninsula Music Festival - 10347 Highway 42

Unit B Green Gables Shops 

P.O. Box 340, Ephraim, Wisconsin  54211

email: musicfestival@musicfestival.com

Phone: (920) 854-4060