Armenian-American conductor Tigran Arakelyan is in his fourth season as the Music Director of the Northwest Mahler Festival He is also the Music Director of the Port Townsend Symphony Orchestra, Bainbridge Island Youth Orchestras, and the Federal Way Youth Symphony. Previously, he held assistant/associate conductor positions with the Los Angeles Youth Orchestra, Bellingham Symphony Orchestra, Northridge Youth Philharmonic and the Rainier Symphony. For three seasons he was a Senior Conducting Fellow with the California Philharmonic, the orchestra comprised of professional musicians from Southern California. Arakelyan was a prize winner in The American Prize—Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award in Orchestral Programming and at the Global Music Awards.
During the summer of 2019 he will conduct the LARK Orchestra in California and a third tour (2014, 2017) of South Korea with the Federal Way Youth Symphony. Arakelyan’s recent conducting engagements were with the Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Olympia Chamber Orchestra, Armenian Pops Orchestra, Centum Youth Orchestra (S. Korea), Juneau Symphony, Bainbridge Symphony Orchestra, Inverted Space Ensemble, and innovative collaborations with the Olympic Performance Group, Evergreen Choir, and Olympic Girls’ Choir. He is the founder of the Port Townsend Chamber Orchestra, Bainbridge Island String Orchestra Festival and the PTSO Young Artist Competition.
Arakelyan was the Founder Conductor/Artistic Director of Cadence Chamber Orchestra (WA) and the Music Director of Whidbey Island Orchestra (WA), University of Washington Campus Philharmonia, UW Summer Orchestra, Bremerton Youth Symphony and Lark Musical Society Youth Orchestra (CA). He has been instrumental in initiating innovative collaborations with composers, soloists, visual artists, dancers, and choirs. Arakelyan helped in creating youth scholarship programs, festivals, young composer competitions and led orchestral performances at unconventional venues.
He conducted the Pacific Northwest premiere of Paul Hindemith Kammermuzik Nr. 1. Arakelyan has also conducted the Yakima Symphony Chamber Orchestra, University of California Los Angeles Philharmonia, Redmond Academy of Theatre Arts, Korean Music Association Choir (WA), Inverted Space Modern Ensemble, U.W. Symphony, California State University Northridge Symphony, CSU Northridge Discovery Players, and the Nimbus Ensemble (CA). He premiered works by Keith Jarrett, James Cohn, Iosif Andriasov, Eleanor Aversa, Michael Austin Miller, Yiğit Kolat, Jeff Bowen, Jon Brenner, Arshak Andriasov, and Felipe Rossi.
Arakelyan played alongside Sir James Galway during his induction into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He is a three time recipient of the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU) Performing Arts Fellowship, Edward Hosharian Award, and the Armenian Allied Arts Competition (1st place), among others. Arakelyan participated in the Conductors Guild Workshop, Pierre Monteux School for Conductors, Idyllwild Music Festival, Dilijan Chamber Music Series, Seasons Festival Academy, and Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival. He conducted in masterclasses with notable conductors David Loebel, Frank Battisti, Donald Thulean, Ennio Nicotra, David Effron, Neal Stulberg and Michael Jinbo.
Arakelyan earned the Doctor of Musical Arts in conducting from the University of Washington. His primary conducting studies are with Ludovic Morlot, David Alexander Rahbee and flute studies with John Barcellona, Paul Taub, and Laura Osborn. Arakelyan played in flute masterclasses with Stephen Preston and Shigenori Kudo. In his youth he played in the Los Angeles Junior Philharmonic Orchestra. Outside of conducting, he is the founder and host of Off the Podium Music Podcast where his guests are renowned musicians and artists.