Conductor Mentoring

This program is intended to provide conductors of varying levels with the opportunity to consult with experienced colleagues who will serve as a confidential resource for advice and guidance concerning the craft of conducting, and career-related issues. Our roster of participating mentors is comprised of veteran conductors who have a wealth of experience, on and off the podium. They are active performers and educators who possess a wide range of musical and professional expertise. 

Mentoring topics include, but are not necessarily limited to:

  • conductor training
  • musical concerns in a particular score
  • general career development (professional and academic)
  • psychology of conducting
  • issues with boards of directors or management
  • repertoire and programming
  • preparing for an audition or interview
  • rehearsing effectively
  • general questions about being a music director

Requirements & Guidelines

  • Open to all levels of conducting experience.
  • Participant must have access to conduct an ensemble.
  • No application or program fees.
  • Membership in ICO is not needed to apply. 
  • There is no fee to participate if selected but we do ask that all mentees become an ICO member at the individual level ($50/annually) or for their band/orchestra to become a member ($50-$200 annual membership depending budget size) if they aren't members already.
  •  Application deadline: rolling application process 

Mentor Session Options

Mentees will have the option to choose one or a combination of coaching sessions:

  • In-person interactive coaching with conductor and ensemble or post-rehearsal one-on-one session.
  •  2-3 zoom sessions in which conducting videos are reviewed and discussed
  • Independent review of conducting video; with feedback, questions, correspondence happening primarily over e-mail



Participating Mentors include:

Emanuele Andrizzi, Roosevelt University - [email protected]

Ben Firer, Northeastern Illinois University - [email protected]

Michael Mishra, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville - [email protected]

Allen Tinkham, Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras - [email protected]