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Music Director

Travis Jürgens, a winner of the American Prize in Orchestral Conducting, has conducted the Colorado and Alabama symphony orchestras, Boulder Philharmonic, Denver Philharmonic, Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic, Illinois Valley Symphony, Rose City Chamber Orchestra, South Carolina Philharmonic, and the Orquestra de Cadaqués, among others. He has worked with esteemed conductors, including Michael Tilson Thomas and Marin Alsop, who invited Jürgens to attend the Conductors Guild Composer/Conductor Workshop at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music for two consecutive summers. He also studied at the Aspen Music Festival, which is under the direction of Robert Spano.

Jürgens has performed in the United States, Europe and Japan. He has been praised as "a superior conductor" and "well on his way to becoming a major conductor in the world of symphony orchestras" (Opus Colorado). Musicians who have played under his baton have commented on his exceptional talent, dynamic musicianship, efficient rehearsals and strong leadership.

Jürgens, an assistant professor at Ohio Northern University, has been the music director of the Ohio Northern Symphony and Musical Theatre since 2014. He also is the music director of the Lima Area Youth Orchestra. Previously, he was the music director of the Philharmonia of Kansas City, the associate conductor of the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra, and a cover conductor for the Colorado Symphony. He also held the position of associate conductor of the Lamont Symphony Orchestra and Opera Theatre in Denver, where he received the Leon Guide Outstanding Conductor Award.

During his tenure with the Philharmonia of Kansas City, Jürgens dramatically raised the artistic level of the orchestra. Additionally, he helped to increase the audience base, which led to the organization's first sold-out concert. In collaboration with the board and staff, he expanded the education programs to include new clinics, side-by-side concerts, competitions, and a mentorship program. He also conducted many world premieres by emerging composers and organized a video shoot with ESPN for a 2011 Halloween Special that aired during Monday Night Football. As an active fundraiser, he has participated in numerous fundraising activities, including book fairs, a silent auction, and the recruiting of board and staff members who created the organization's first annual fund drive. Jürgens has formed new collaborations with the Kansas City Children's Chorus, public and private schools, and local choruses; he also continued a partnership with the Kansas City Youth Ballet.

Jürgens' former teachers have applauded his expressive conducting technique, tremendous energy, thorough preparation and omnipresent passion for music. He earned his bachelor’s degree in piano performance with high distinction from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, his master’s degree in orchestral conducting from the University of Illinois, and his artist diploma from the University of Denver. Additionally, he studied at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien and the Institut für Europäishe Studien in Vienna, Austria. He also made his Viennese debut as guest conductor of the IES Vienna Chamber Orchestra.

He has served as graduate assistant conductor at the University of Illinois and assistant conductor for the University of Illinois Opera Theater. While in Illinois, he founded the United Orchestra of Urbana. His primary conducting teachers include Donald Schleicher, Lawrence Golan and David Effron. Additionally, he has received instruction from Michael Tilson Thomas, Marin Alsop, Gustav Meier, Larry Rachleff, Steven Byess and many others. As an advocate of new music, Jürgens has performed many world premieres by emerging composers and creates innovative programs to engage communities. 

Symphony Administration

Assistant Conductors / Managers

Assistant conductors/managers for 2016-17 to be announced.


Lindsay Porter, a senior music education major from Hiram, Ohio.

Department of Music

Patty Warner

Presser 202
525 South Main Street
Ada, Ohio 45810
Monday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Tuesday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Wednesday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Thursday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Friday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed