JSO’s April concert will wake us from Winter’s slumber with Psalms and Fanfares. Maestro William Todd Hunt conducts the Juneau Symphony Orchestra and the Juneau Symphony Chorus across a landscape of emotions from the desperation of defeat to the fanfare of triumph. Program highlights include monumental sound from a large orchestra and the biggest brass section ever to appear with JSO, enchanting soloists, and the world premiere of a piece inspired by the Shrine of St Therese, commissioned by Mr. Hunt. Join our community celebration of the return of Spring with this exciting program.
Zemlinsky – Psalm 23 for Mixed Choir and Orchestra
Kodaly – Psalmus Hungaricus, for Tenor Solo, Choir, and Orchestra
Eads – I Love Him! A Meditation for Orchestra on the Life of St. Therese, Patron Saint of Alaska
Janacek – Sinfonietta for Large Orchestra
William Todd Hunt, Guest Conductor
Acclaimed for the absolute artistic transport of his conducting work, William Todd Hunt was born in Louisville, Kentucky. Artistic Director of Juneau’s Orpheus Project, as well as a freelance conductor, Mr. Hunt has also appeared with Anchorage Opera, Juneau Symphony, Juneau Lyric Opera, the Taku Winds, the Amalga Chamber Orchestra, the Northern Hungarian Symphony Orchestra, the Kling Chamber Orchestra, and Thompson Street Opera (KY). He has also conducted the Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic in both Kroměříž and Zlín, Czech Republic as well as concerts with the new music ensemble CrossSound. He served as Assistant at the Evansville Philharmonic and has worked as an assistant with conductors Arpád Jóo, Alfred Savia, Imre Palló and David Harman, among others. Mr. Hunt served as co-founder and Music Director for Ardo Opera (IN), where he produced and conducted several productions, notably at the Bloomington Early Music Festival. Mr. Hunt was the rehearsal conductor and Chorus Master for the JSO for 11 years.
Mr. Hunt holds a Master’s Degree in Orchestral Conducting from Indiana University where he studied under Imre Palló and Thomas Baldner and a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance (Woodwinds) from the University of Louisville (KY). He has participated in masterclasses, seminars, and lessons in America under the guidance of such auspicious conductors as Kurt Masur, Stephen Schwartz, Raffi Armenian and Lawrence Leighton Smith. After leaving Indiana University he continued his studies in Europe where he worked with Jorma Panula, Kirk Trevor, Johannes Schlaefli, Mariusz Smolij, and Tomaš Koutnik.
With a repertoire spanning from the middle ages to new music, Mr. Hunt’s recent performances include Puccini’s Il Trittico, Madama Butterfly, Tosca and La Bohème, Mozart’s Nozze di Figaro, Così fan tutte, die Zauberflöte and Don Giovanni, Bernstein’s West Side Story, Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci, as well as Eads’s The Princess Sophia, which he commissioned.
Clay Hilley, Tenor
American heldentenor Clay Hilley is poised for a prominent international career in the most demanding roles of the operatic repertory. From Bacchus to Florestan and Canio to Laca, the Georgia native has been acclaimed by The New York Times for his “vocal heft, clarion sound and stamina.”
Honing his repertoire and stage experience at first by covering in the leading international opera houses of North America, engagements have included Parsifal with Yannick Nézet-Séguin at the Metropolitan Opera, Der Ring des Nibelungen (Siegmund and both Siegfrieds) with Donald Runnicles, and Turandot conducted by Nicola Luisotti at San Francisco Opera, Siegfried at the Canadian Opera Company led by Johannes Debus, and Samson et Dalila under the baton of Emmanuel Villaume at The Dallas Opera. In recent seasons Clay Hilley has performed the title role of Dvořák’s Dimitrij in a new production by Anne Bogart for the Bard Summerscape conducted by Leon Botstein; the title role of Mozart’s Idomeneo–both in a new production by Arila Siegert at the Salzburger Landestheater under the baton of Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, and at the Theater Würzburg in a production by Stefan Suschke conducted by Enrico Calesso; Radamès in Aida with Opera Southwest and Baltimore Concert Opera; Canio in Pagliacci with Virginia Opera; and Erik in Der fliegende Holländer with Austin Lyric Opera.
Concert experience includes: Mahler’s Eighth Symphony with John DeMain and the Madison Symphony Orchestra and the American Symphony Orchestra, Das Lied von der Erde with The Apollo Orchestra of Washington D.C., and Strauss’s Feuersnot with the American Symphony Orchestra for his Carnegie Hall debut.
The Wagner Society of New York presented Clay Hilley in recital, singing a program of Mahler, Janáček, Mozart, Dvořák, and Wagner following the Society’s recognition of the tenor with its Top Prize, the Robert Lauch Award, in 2015. He received the Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education at the University of Georgia, a Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Georgia State University, a Professional Studies Certificate from the Manhattan School of Music, and a Performer’s Certificate from the Opera Institute at Boston University.