The Catholic University of America

July 26, 2007

Catholic University Appoints New Orchestra Conductor

David Searle
(Photo by Kristina Marie Krug)

Catholic University's Benjamin T. Rome School of Music has announced the appointment of David Searle as conductor of the CUA Orchestra, effective Aug. 15, 2007.

Searle will serve as director of orchestral activities as well as director of conducting studies.

"David Searle is a magical teacher, and a solid, substantive and informed conductor. He is an imaginative teaching conductor and a Pied Piper of young musicians. Finland's loss is CUA's extraordinary gain," said Murry Sidlin, music school dean.

Before his appointment at CUA, he was Chief Conductor of the Helsinki University Symphony Orchestra in Finland from 2003 to 2007. In this position, he led the orchestra on two international tours, founded a competition for young composers and recorded a compact disc of previously unrecorded historical Finnish music.

In his career, the Knoxville, Tenn., native has conducted several orchestras in Finland, including the Helsinki Philharmonic, the Oulu Symphony Orchestra, the Jonesuu City Orchestra, the Pori Sinfonietta and the Sibelius Academy Symphony Orchestra. In addition to his work in Finland, he has been a guest conductor for orchestras in Canada, Norway, Sweden and the United States.

He was featured in a 2006 Finnish radio series, "Migrating Birds of Music," about foreign musicians who have made their careers in Finland.

Searle has been a guest lecturer or clinician at several institutions, including Barratt-Due Musikkinstitutt (Norway, 2002), the Royal Conservatory of Music (Toronto, 2002), Oulu Conservatory (2004), Sibelius Academy (2004) and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (2006).

Searle is one of the few Americans to have received the Diploma in Conducting with Highest Honors from the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. He received a bachelor's degree in trombone performance from the New England Conservatory in 1992 and a master's degree in orchestral conducting from Northwestern University in 1996.

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The Benjamin T. Rome School of Music is the only university music school in the Washington, D.C., area. It offers both undergraduate and graduate programs of study in performance of instrumental music (including chamber music and orchestral studies), piano, voice (including choral music and opera), composition and theory, musicology, conducting, musical theater, music education, voice and piano pedagogy. The music school designs programs and curricula that inspire young musicians to be imaginative in developing audiences, in providing musical service throughout communities, and in connecting with the evolution of American arts institutions.