Music Director Emeritus
As a guest conductor, Christopher Wilkins has appeared with many of the leading orchestras of the United States, including those of Boston, Buffalo, Chicago, Cincinnati, Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, and San Francisco. He has also appeared overseas, with numerous concerts in the UK, New Zealand, Spain, and throughout Latin America.
Mr. Wilkins currently serves as Music Director of the Akron Symphony and Boston’s Landmarks Orchestra, a summer orchestra performing weekly on Boston’s Esplanade and throughout the neighborhoods of Boston.
For ten seasons he was Music Director of the San Antonio Symphony, and since 2001 has served the orchestra as Music Director Emeritus.
During his tenure in San Antonio, the orchestra made extraordinary gains artistically, increased its profile and reputation within the community, and gained national acclaim for several new programs. Together they received six programming awards from ASCAP, including the first-ever Morton Gould Award for creative programming.
He has also served as Music Director of the Orlando Philharmonic, and the Colorado Springs Symphony, and is currently Artistic Advisor to the Opera Theatre of the Rockies in Colorado Springs. Mr. Wilkins also served as resident conductor of the Youth Orchestra of the Americas, helping in the formation of that orchestra in its inaugural season, and subsequently leading it on tours throughout the Americas.
In 1992 Mr. Wilkins was winner of the Seaver/NEA Award, designed to identify exceptionally talented American conductors in the early stages of major careers. He served as the associate conductor of the Utah Symphony from 1986-89, assisting his former teacher Joseph Silverstein, and was assistant conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra from 1983-86, as assistant to Music Director Christoph von Dohnányi. Previously, he was conducting assistant with the Oregon Symphony under Music Director James DePreist, and a conducting fellow at the Berkshire Music Center at Tanglewood.
Born in Boston, Mr. Wilkins earned his bachelor’s degree from Harvard College in 1978. As an oboist, he performed with many ensembles in the Boston area, including the Berkshire Music Center Orchestra at Tanglewood, and the Boston Philharmonic under Benjamin Zander. He studied at Yale University with Otto-Werner Mueller, receiving his master of music degree in 1981. In 1979-80, he attended the Hochschule der Künste in West Berlin, as a recipient of the John Knowles Paine traveling fellowship, awarded by the Harvard music department.