Willis named principal conductor, artistic advisor, of Boca Symphonia

Alastair Willis has been named principal conductor and artistic advisor of Symphonia Boca Raton. Photo courtesy of Symphonia Boca Raton.

By: Dale King
Contributing Writer

A familiar leader of The Symphonia Boca Raton during its 15-year tenure has been named principal conductor and artistic advisor of the local ensemble considered South Florida’s world-class chamber orchestra.

Grammy-nominated maestro Alastair Willis has often fronted the group during the past several years and in the orchestra’s second season in 2005. He was also principal conductor for the orchestra’s “New Directions” concert series in 2019.

“Alastair is an incredible addition to our orchestra,” said Annabel Russell, the orchestra’s executive director. “His vibrant, energetic presentations have been so popular with our audiences, and we could not be more thrilled that his passion for classical music will be shared regularly now with our guests.”

“I’m absolutely thrilled to be invited to be the Symphonia’s principal conductor and artistic advisor,” said Willis. “It has been a privilege to be part of the Symphonia’s rich history, and I relish the opportunity to help shape its future.”

“It’s always a pleasure collaborating with the wonderful Symphonia musicians,” he added. “I’ve long felt a special connection with them and with our audiences.”

Willis has guest conducted a number of premier orchestras around the world, including the Chicago Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra, Mexico City Philharmonic, Orquestra Sinfonica de Rio de Janeiro, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchestra Berlin, Hong Kong Sinfonietta, China National Orchestra (Beijing) and Silk Road Ensemble with American cellist Yo Yo Ma.

His recording of Ravel’s “L’Enfant et les Sortileges” with the Nashville Symphony and Opera for Naxos received a Grammy nomination for Best Classical Album in 2009.

For information on The Symphonia’s 2020-2021 season, visit www.thesymphonia.org or call