Defiant Requiem:  a concert/drama about the performance of the Verdi Requiem by prisoners of the Terezin Concentration Camp

Illuminations:  a series of innovative concerts designed to attract new audiences and expand the traditional role of the symphony orchestra.  Each program was written, conducted and designed by Mr. Sidlin


Cascade Festival of Music, Bend, Oregon, 1996-2007


New Haven Symphony

12 seasons

Long Beach Symphony

8 seasons

Tulsa Philharmonic

Connecticut Ballet

Oregon Symphony, Resident Conductor, 1994-2002

Principal Guest Conductor for Gavleborg Orkester of Sweden


St. Louis Symphony; the major orchestras of San Francisco, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, Atlanta, Colorado, Utah, Florida, Jerusalem; the George Enescu Philharmonic of Bucharest; Czech National Symphony; MVD Orchestra of Budapest; Iceland Symphony; and major orchestras of Madrid, I Solisti Veneti, Honolulu, Seattle, Monte Carlo, Vancouver, Victoria, and Edmonton and Quebec;  in addition to the Boston Pops, San Antonio Symphony and Opera, Houston Symphony, and repeated performances with the Lindberg Orchestra of Holland

Made his 18th appearance as conductor of the annual New Year’s Eve at the Kennedy Center in 2011


8 years as Dean of the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music at Catholic University;

Currently Professor of Conducting

Professor of Conducting Studies and Director of Orchestras, University of Minnesota.

1997 - Named Educator of the Year by the National Association of Independent Schools of Music


Resident Artist/Teacher and Associate Director of Aspen’s American Academy of Conducting.  2011 marked his 33rd year at the Aspen Music Festival.





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New York, NY 10019

tel: 212/977-6779

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Associate and Business Manager


Tenderland Suite, Copland


The Tender Land, suite from the opera Suite, arranged by Murry Sidlin
Composed by Aaron Copland
Third Angle New Music Ensemble, Robert MacNeil, Monica Yunus
Conducted by Murry Sidlin
Appalachian Spring, concert suite, Composed by Aaron Copland with Third Angle New Music Ensemble, Conducted by Murry Sidlin

Maria De Buenos Aires, Piazzola
Conducted by Murry Sidlin with the Cascade Festival of Music Chamber Orchestra




Murry Sidlin is a conductor with a unique gift for engaging audiences who continues a diverse and distinctive musical career. He is the founder and president of The Defiant Requiem Foundation, an organization that sponsors live concert performances of Defiant Requiem: Verdi at Terezín, as well as other projects, including the documentary film, Defiant Requiem, and The Rafael Schächter Institute for Arts and Humanities at Terezín.

Mr. Sidlin began his career as assistant conductor of the Baltimore Symphony under Sergiu Comissiona and then was appointed resident conductor of the National Symphony Orchestra by Antal Doráti. He has served as music director of the New Haven and Long Beach (California) Symphonies, the Tulsa Philharmonic, and the Connecticut Ballet.  For eight years he was resident conductor of the Oregon Symphony and, from 2002 to 2010, he served as Dean of the School of Music at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C..  Murry Sidlin was principal guest conductor of the Gävleborgs Symfoniorkester in Sweden, and was artistic director of the Cascade Festival of Music in Bend, Oregon for twelve summers. He has conducted more than 300 concerts with the San Diego Symphony, and, on December 31, 2011, conducted his 18th consecutive New Year’s Eve Gala at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC with the National Symphony Orchestra. The summer of 2011 marked Mr. Sidlin’s 33rd year as resident artist/teacher and associate director of conducting studies at the Aspen Music Festival where, with conductor David Zinman, he developed the American Academy of Conducting.

In addition to his many distinguished conducting posts and guest engagements, Mr. Sidlin has also appeared as conductor around the world. In the U.S. he has conducted the Atlanta, New Mexico, New Orleans, Pittsburgh, Seattle, and St. Louis Symphony Orchestras; the Colorado, Honolulu, Houston, San Antonio, San Francisco, and Utah Symphonies; the Florida and Minnesota Orchestras; and the Boston Pops. In Canada he has led orchestras in Edmonton, Quebec, Vancouver, and Victoria. In Europe Murry Sidlin has worked with the Czech National, Iceland, Lithuanian National, MAV (Budapest), and Spanish Radio and Television (Madrid) Symphony Orchestras; the George Enescu Philharmonic, I Solisti Veneti, the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Orquestra Gulbenkian (Lisbon), among many others.

While with the Oregon Symphony, Murry Sidlin created the nationally recognized Nerve Endings series. This series featured innovative concerts designed to attract and engage new audiences and expand the traditional role of the symphony orchestra. Each program was designed, written, and conducted by Mr. Sidlin. Nerve Endings attracted hundreds of new subscribers each season. Among the most popular of the more than 25 creative programs were: Sigmund Freud and the Dreams of Gustav Mahler; From Lenny to Maestro; The Anatomy of the 9th; Aaron Copland’s America; Russian David, Soviet Goliath (Shostakovich vs. Stalin); Shadows and Voices: The Last Days of Tchaikovsky; and Do the Tango and Get Arrested.

In April of 2002 Murry Sidlin presented the first performances of Defiant Requiem: Verdi at Terezín in Portland, Oregon. Since the premiere, he has led a total of nineteen performances. On three occasions - in May 2006, May 2009, and June 2009 - Mr. Sidlin has led performances in the Czech town of Terezin, the site of the Theresienstadt concetration camp.  The June 2009 performance served as the conclusion to an International Holocaust Conference attended by nearly 800 delegates from 47 nations. On May 9, 2010, Defiant Requiem was presented to an audience of 5,000 people in Budapest, Hungary and televised live on Danube Television throughout Eastern Europe. The most recent performances were given in Jerusalem on May 31, 2012, with the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra and Kühn Choir of Prague, and on October 11, 2012, with Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus and on June 6, 2013, at St. Vitas Cathedral in Prague at the invitation of H.E. Cardinal Dominik Duka.

In 1987, Murry Sidlin collaborated with the celebrated American composer Aaron Copland to orchestrate a new chamber ensemble version of Copland’s full-length opera The Tender Land. Later, he created a suite from the opera to serve as a companion work to Copland’s chamber version of Appalachian Spring. Mr. Sidlin has performed the chamber ensemble version of The Tender Land over 200 times and has recorded both the full-length opera and the suite for KOCH International.  For the same label, he recorded Piazzolla’s tango opera Maria de Buenos Aires, with the Third Angle New Music Ensemble.

Murry Sidlin studied with the legendary pedagogues Leon Barzin and Sergiu Celibidache. He was appointed by Presidents Ford and Carter to serve on the White House Commission of Presidential Scholars.  He won national acclaim for the television series Music Is…, a ten-part series about music for children that was seen over the PBS network for five years. In 1997 the National Association of Independent Schools of Music recognized Mr. Sidlin as Educator of the Year. He has been featured on NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, and several times on CBS Sunday Morning. Most recently he was asked to appear on CNN International to speak about Defiant Requiem. In May of 2011 Mr. Sidlin received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from his alma mater, the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University.  The Award honors alumni who have typified the Johns Hopkins tradition of excellence and brought credit to the University by their personal accomplishments, professional achievement, and humanitarian service.  In September of 2011, the Archbishop of Prague presented Mr. Sidlin with the medal of St. Agnes of Bohemia for his dedication to illuminating the legacy of Terezín.  In January 2013, Mr. Sidlin was nominated to the International Board of Governors of the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance.  On June 11, 2013 Murry Sidlin received the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Medal of Valor for his extraordinary efforts to keep alive the memory of Rafael Schächter.

June 2013


On Tuesday night, June 11th, at the National Tribute Dinner of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and its Museum of Tolerance at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, Maestro Sidlin received the Center’s Medal of Valor for his “extraordinary efforts to keep alive the memory of Rafael Schächter”.... and his recreation of Schächter and his chorus’s performances of the Verdi Requiem (in defiance of their Nazi captors)...“will assure that Schächter’s memory lives on in perpetuity.”

Jim Gianopulos received the center’s Humanitarian Award before an international crowd, including many high profile members of the Film Industry.  Mr. Gianopulos played an integral role in the Wiesenthal Center’s latest fundraising campaign, which culminated in a $2.2 million donation to the center and its Museum of Tolerance.

The Chairmen of this year’s dinner was SWC Trustees Jeffrey Katzenberg (CEO of DreamWorks Animation); Ron Meyer (President and COO, NBC Universal Entertainment); and Gerry Schwartz (Chairman of Onex).  The audience included leaders of the entertainment and film industry as well as the Jewish community of Los Angeles.