Barbara Day Turner, Conductor
Conductor Barbara Day Turner is music director of the San José Chamber Orchestra, which she founded 20 years ago. She is an ardent advocate for new music and has commissioned and premiered more than 110 new works which have been performed by the San José Chamber Orchestra. Maestra Day Turner is also the music administrator and conductor of the Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theater where she has been resident conductor for the past 10 seasons. Most recently, she led an all Gershwin concert, as well as productions of Don Giovanni and South Pacific. BDT’s resumé includes most of the standard opera repertoire, ranging from the early works of the baroque to several world premieres, as well as dozens of musical theater pieces. Abroad, Maestra Day Turner has conducted at the Rheinsberg Festival in Berlin, the Thuringian Symphony Orchestra in Germany, as well as the Orquesta Sinfónica de Aguascalientes, Mexico.
Elsewhere, in the recent past, she has conducted La Bohéme for Rimrock Opera in Montana and the Symphony Silicon Valley’s setting of The Music Man. In her many years with Opera San José, she premiered Henry Mollicone’s Hotel Eden, Alva Henderson’s West of WashingtonSquare, Craig Bohmler and Daniel Helfgot’s The Tale of the Nutcracker and George Roumanis’ Phaedra, besides conducting a vast repertoire of works by Handel, Cavalli, Mozart, Rossini, Puccini, Bizet, Verdi, Britten, Stravinsky, Barber and many others. Other opera venues include Portland Opera (Nixon In China) and El Paso Opera (Elixir of Love). Her orchestral performances include concerts with the Redwood, South Valley and Billings symphonies; and the North Fayetteville orchestra.
Recent appearances as guest conductor include the San José State University’s double bill of the operas The Clever Mistress by Sirota and Suor, and Isabellaby Xavier Rodriguez; the musical leadership of Long Live Life, music from Theresienstadt; along with the release of Choose Life, with music by Mona Lyn Reese, the fifth CD released with the participation of the San José Chamber Orchestra. The Maestra’s upcoming projects include productions of Robert Ward’s The Cruciblewith Rimrock Opera and Gounod’s Faust, Kiss Me Kate, and Girl Crazy with the Utah Festival Opera; plus numerous appearances as harpsichordist.