New Haven Symphony Orchestra Names Perry So to Position of Music Director

By Francisco Salazar

The New Haven Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors has that announced Perry So will be its next Music Director.

The conductor will assume the title beginning with the 2024-2025 season, taking over for Alasdair Neale, who will end his five-year tenure with the orchestra in May 2024.

So is currently Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Orquesta Sinfónica de Navarra and has served as Associate Conductor of the Hong Kong Philharmonic, Conducting Fellow of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Artistic Collaborator of the Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias in Spain, and on the conducting faculty of the Manhattan School of Music.

In a statement, So said, “I am deeply honored to be entrusted with the artistic leadership of the New Haven Symphony — the first US professional orchestra I heard when I arrived in this country when I was 18, in the city that my wife and I love and called home for a decade. When I came back this March to work with the orchestra, I encountered an artistically adventurous group of musicians motivated by a profound love for music and dedicated to serving the community. The commitment at every level of the organization to telling a fuller story of our unique American musical heritage than ever before — and doing so in a way that gives voice to those great talents who have been unjustly excluded — gives me great excitement for what we will be able to accomplish together in the years ahead. I look forward to conversations with all of our partners in the weeks and months ahead to learn how we can best serve the New Haven community together. Most of all, I look forward to the many moments of musical joy that we will share in the years to come.”

NHSO Board of Directors President Keith B. Churchwell, MD added, “We are truly excited that Maestro So has agreed to join the NHSO as its Music Director beginning with our 2024-25 season. His ties to the New Haven area coupled with his expert musicianship and his great desire to invest in the New Haven community along multiple avenues will continue the work that has matured under Maestro Neale’s leadership over the past four years despite extremely challenging circumstances. We thank Alasdair for his wonderful work and residency with the Symphony and look forward in the coming years to Perry’s tenure with the NHSO!”