Columbia’s only orchestra designed for nonprofessional musicians of all ages has a new leader. Stefan Freund was named music director and conductor of the Columbia Civic Orchestra on Sunday. He has been rehearsing with the chamber orchestra’s 58 active members since January.
Freund, 29, a composer and cellist, fulfills the board of directors’ main requirements, said orchestra manager Bruce Gordon.
“He has a broad knowledge of the symphony and its literature,” Gordon said. “And he’s a cellist, so he’s well-tuned into the string sections, which is the particular challenge for a community orchestra to improve. He’s been well received during rehearsals.”
Freund, who is a visiting assistant professor of composition and music theory at the MU, received his doctorate of musical arts in 2002 from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y. He is also principal cellist for the New York-based chamber ensemble Alarm Will Sound.
Freund will make his debut with the Civic Orchestra on Feb. 28 in a concert featuring the New World Symphony of Antonin Dvorak at the Historic Missouri Theatre. He will also lead the orchestra in its April 17 concert at the Historic Missouri Theatre.