Artistic Leadership

Leonard Slatkin

Leonard Slatkin

Music Director
Music directorship endowed by the Kresge Foundation

Internationally renowned conductor Leonard Slatkin began his critically acclaimed tenure as Music Director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra at the start of the 2008-09 season.

In addition to his post at the DSO, Maestro Slatkin is the Music Director of the Orchestre National de Lyon.  He is also renowned for his historic leadership of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra from 1979 until 1996 and his successful three-year tenure as Principal Guest Conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl.

Slatkin's more than 100 recordings have won seven Grammy Awards.  He currently records with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra for the Naxos label.  His newest book, Conducting Business, is available at  Slatkin blogs regularly at Huffington Post.

Terence Blanchard

Fred A. & Barbara M. Erb Jazz Creative Director Chair

Grammy Award-winning musician and composer Terence Blanchard will serve as the Detroit Symphony Orchestsra's Fred A. and Barbara M. Erb Jazz Creative Director for both the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons.

Neeme Järvi

Music Director Emeritus

Neeme Järvi, the DSO's celebrated Music Director for 15 years, is the Music Director Emeritus of the orchestra. Following his appointment in 1990, Maestro Järvi led the DSO to new artistic and institutional heights, attracting audiences in record numbers, leading acclaimed concerts, national and international tours, radio broadcasts and award-winning recordings. Under his leadership, the DSO became a symbol for the rebirth of Detroit. Järvi is the second-longest serving music director in the organization's history (famed Russian conductor Ossip Gabrilowitsch led the DSO from 1918 to 1936).

Teddy Abrams

Assistant Conductor
Twitter: @teddyconducts 

An acclaimed young conductor, Teddy Abrams also performs as a clarinetist and pianist, and is an established composer. In March 2012, he was appointed Assistant Conductor of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, where he conducts classical programs for the orchestra’s new neighborhood series, helps program its chamber music and contemporary music concerts and leads education and pops performances.  From 2008 to 2011 Abrams was the Conducting Fellow and Assistant Conductor of the New World Symphony (NWS) and conducted many performances, including subscription concerts and numerous other full and chamber orchestra events.  Abrams has conducted the NWS in Miami Beach, Washington, D.C. and at Carnegie Hall, and has worked with many other orchestras around the country.