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ANDREW CRUST

Music Director

American/Canadian conductor ANDREW CRUST has developed a versatile international career as a conductor of orchestral, opera, ballet, film and pops programs. 

In his fifth season as Music Director of the Lima Symphony Orchestra, Crust programs and conducts the Grand Series, Pops and Educational series and has led collaborations with soloists such as Charles Yang, Amit Peled, Sandeep Das, Awadagin Pratt and Laquita Mitchell. Under his leadership the orchestra has enjoyed its most diverse programming to date, engaged in new recording projects, commissioned new works, and during the difficult pandemic seasons, the orchestra was able to record a number and broadcast classical and educational programs. Crust is committed to diversity and representation in the concert hall. Under his leadership, LSO programming of BIPOC and female composers has increased by over 35% during his tenure.

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In his second season as Music Director of the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, Crust programs and conducts a diverse array of performances throughout the state, collaborates with world-class soloists such as Sir Stephen Hough, Béla Fleck, Bella Hristova, Simone Porter, Joshua Roman and Adam Tendler, Tracy Silverman and conducted the world premiere of Nico Muhly's new piano concerto “Sounding” in May of 2024. Crust also led efforts to create a new Pops series, and revitalized the Young Person’s Concert programming, and continues to pursue collaborations with various arts organizations in Vermont. 

In recent and upcoming seasons Crust conducts the symphony orchestras of Calgary, National Arts Centre (Ottawa), Elgin, Rockford, Nova Scotia, Chattanooga, Winnipeg, Laval, Billings, Vancouver Island, Sewannee, Memphis, Hartford and Bozeman as a guest conductor, including return engagements with the Vancouver Symphony, San Diego Symphony and Arkansas Symphony, collaborating with soloists such as Geneva Lewis, George Li, Zuill Bailey, Wei Luo and Shannon Lee. 

Crust is a 2020 winner of the Solti Foundation US Career Assistance Award. In 2021 he was awarded “Prémio a la Proyección” at the Llíria City of Music International Conducting Competition. In 2017 he was awarded first prize at the Accademia Chigiana by Daniele Gatti. He was a semifinalist for the Nestlé/Salzburg Festival’s Young Conductors Award competition, and was selected by members of the Vienna Philharmonic as a winner of the Ansbacher Fellowship, including residency at the Salzburger Festspiele. 

Crust served as the Associate Conductor of the Vancouver Symphony in Canada from 2019-2022, where he led around forty-five performances with the VSO each season, and made dozens of recordings released on theconcerthall.ca. Crust returns frequently to the VSO as a guest conductor. 

Crust is equally at ease in the pit, having conducted ballet with Ballet BC, Ballet Memphis and the New Ballet Ensemble, and opera with Opera McGill, College Light Opera Company, Boulder Opera Company, and others. As a Pops conductor, Crust has collaborated with such artists as Rufus Wainwright, Steven Page, Tony DeSare, Michael Bolton, Dee Daniels, Cirque de la Symphonie, and the United States Jazz Ambassadors, and many others. Andrew has also established himself as a conductor of films with orchestra. 

Crust was the Assistant Conductor of the National Youth Orchestra of the USA (NYO-USA) in 2017 and 2018, assisting Michael Tilson Thomas on an Asian tour, as well as Giancarlo Guerrero, Marin Alsop and James Ross at Carnegie Hall and in a side-by-side performance with the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Abroad, he has led concerts with the Orchestra Giovanile Italiana in Italy, Hamburger Symphoniker at the Mendelssohn Festival in Germany, the Moravian Philharmonic in the Czech Republic and the Orquesta Sinfónica de Chile in Santiago.

Crust is dedicated to exploring new ways of bringing the classical music experience into the 21st century through innovative programming and marketing, creating community-oriented and socially-sensitive concert experiences, and performing unique venues. Crust is a firm believer in meaningful music education, having produced and written a number of original educational programs with orchestras. As an arranger/orchestrator, Andrew partnered with Schirmer to make orchestrations of a set of Florence Price’s art songs, premiered in February 2022, and has orchestrated works by Alma Mahler and Prokofiev, as well as many popular and educational selections.

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