ANN ARBOR SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA BOARD PRESIDENT RICHARD HENDRICKS AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR MARY STEFFEK BLASKE ANNOUNCE THAT ARIE LIPSKY WILL STEP DOWN AS MUSIC DIRECTOR AND CONDUCTOR

June 17, 2019 (Ann Arbor) – In a joint statement, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra Board President Richard Hendricks and Executive Director Mary Steffek Blaske announced today that Arie Lipsky has stepped down from his current role as Music Director and Conductor of the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra. Lipsky joined the organization as Music Director in 2000 and has served as conductor for 19 seasons.  Guest conductors have been secured for the A²SO’s 2019-2020 season and a national search for a new music director will be led by a search committee.

“We are heartbroken for Arie that his very difficult health struggles in the last six months have led him to this decision,” said A²SO Board President Richard Hendricks. “His resignation was yet another act of leadership, and we accepted his decision in that same spirit.  We owe him our sincerest gratitude for the amazing work he has done over the years to elevate our Symphony to its current highest-ever-quality, both in its music-making and in the breadth and depth of its educational enrichment and community engagement,” continued Hendricks.

“During Arie’s 19 years at the podium, we have heard inspiring world premieres, welcomed rising stars and living legends of classical music to our stages, sparked the imaginations of hundreds of thousands of young people, and reached artistic heights never before seen in our community.  He made the concept of ‘grow with your A²SO’ come alive by starting family, pops, Stained Glass and chamber concerts,” said A²SO Executive Director Mary Steffek Blaske.  “Arie’s legacy will live on in the very DNA of our symphony, through the lives he has touched with his warmth and music-making, and through his unwavering dedication to building the highest-quality musical organization in our region.”

“Arie has been a wonderful friend and colleague to the musicians during his time as Music Director. Together, we have worked to grow the Ann Arbor Symphony from a community-based ensemble into an esteemed professional orchestra, a valuable educational resource, and a wellspring of cultural capital and artistic inspiration throughout the region —all while maintaining the community-centered focus that is so integral to our symphony’s mission,” said Tim Michling, Principal Oboist and elected spokesperson for the orchestra’s musicians.

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The A²SO is a premier regional orchestra offering live symphonic music to over 70,000 patrons of all ages in venues ranging from the historic Michigan Theater and Hill Auditorium to schools, daycares, libraries, farmers markets, and various senior citizen centers in the five-county area of Southeast Michigan. For tickets, visit a2so.com, email tickets@a2so.com, or call (734)994-4801.

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