Fresh on the heels of what has been called his “tour-de-force” Carnegie Hall debut in June of 2015, American conductor Matthew Savery enjoys an ever-expanding reputation for his multi-faceted career as an electrifying performer, dedicated orchestra builder and charismatic teacher. Mr. Savery is currently serving as Music Director and Conductor of the Bozeman (MT) Symphony Orchestra and Symphonic Choir as well as the Wyoming Symphony Orchestra.
Having collaborated with some of the most exciting artists of our time, such as Jon Nakamatsu, Alexander Markov, The Canadian Brass, Carol Wincenc, Roberto Diaz, Andres Cardenes, Ryan Anthony, Eric Ruske, Judith Ingolfsson, and many more, Matthew Savery’s career has brought him to orchestras throughout the United States, Europe and Canada. He has led performances with the Boise, Dayton, Fort Wayne, Long Island and Naples philharmonics, Indianapolis, East Texas, El Paso, Greater Bridgeport (16 performances), Greater Lansing, Lake St. Clair, New Haven, Quad City, Saginaw Bay, Sioux City, Springfield (MA, MO and OH), South Dakota and Virginia symphony orchestras, Missouri Chamber Orchestra, Cape May Music Festival, Canada’s Victoria Symphony, Italy’s Orchestra Sinfonica di Bari, Turkey’s Presidential Symphony Orchestra, and the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine. While at the University of Michigan, Matthew Savery was the founding Music Director of the University Campus Chamber Orchestra; subsequently, he served as Music Director of the Comic Opera Guild of Ann Arbor.
Along with his regular duties with the Bozeman Symphony, where his innovative subscription, family and children’s programming earns consistent praise – and sold-out houses, Matthew Savery has established an active commissioning program, bringing compelling new compositional voices to his orchestra and its audiences, among them: Kenneth Fuchs –Glacier (Concerto for Electric Guitar and Orchestra); Erik Santos –Karnak, …in the Mines of Desire, Sun Road (Five Symphonic Dances for Orchestra); Elodie Lauten – Symphony 2001; James M. Stephenson, III – Concertino and Fanfare for Orchestra; Lowell Liebermann – Concerto for Clarinet.
During his years with the orchestra, Mr. Savery has also presided over a ten-fold rate of financial growth, while regularly attracting over 3% of Bozeman’s metropolitan population to its concerts. Matthew Savery offers Montana’s schools a “Conductor in Residency” program that has accounted for dozens of hours per school year. He is much in demand as guest lecturer and in-school clinician. Mr. Savery is a recipient of the Eugene and Sadie Power Award for the Performing Arts. In October 1998, he and the Bozeman Symphony Orchestra were the subjects of a special feature on “CBS Sunday Morning.”
Since his appointment to the Wyoming Symphony Orchestra, Matthew Savery and his notable artistic and organizational skills have refocused the greater-Casper area’s attention on the orchestra with gratifying results, among them a dramatic elevation of the orchestra’s artistic achievement and the quality of its guest artists, a broadening of the scope of the performance repertoire, a 30% increase in attendance and a 35% increase in the budget. With enthusiastic Board support, he has introduced children’s and family programming, the “Music on the Move” outreach program, and his “Conductor in Residency” program for the public schools. Of special pride to the entire organization was Maestro Savery’s development of the ˆWyoming Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Competition”— the first of it’s kind in the State of Wyoming— geared towards both high school and college students.
A native of Western Massachusetts, just “down the road” from the famed Tanglewood Music Festival, Matthew Savery graduated from the New England Conservatory of Music and received his Master of Music Degree from the University of Michigan, where he was the recipient of a Teaching Assistantship to the prestigious studio of Gustav Meier and to which he returned in 2001 and 2006 as a Visiting Guest Lecturer. In addition to Mr. Meier, his principal teachers have been Pascal Verrot and Frank Battisti.
Matthew makes his home in Bozeman, Montana, with his wife, Soprano Catherine Viscardi Savery, and their three-year-old son Adam.
Jon Harney is an associate professor of music at MSU-Bozeman. He received his Bachelor of Music degree in music education from Luther College, Decorah, Iowa where he studied under Weston Noble and Masters and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in vocal performance from the University of Minnesota where he studied with Clifton Ware. As a tenor soloist, he has sung more than twenty-five principal and supporting roles in opera, operetta, and major works with orchestra and chorus. While active with the University of Minnesota opera theater, he appeared as The Sailor in Dido and Aeneas, Fenton in Falstaff, Nemorino in The Elixir of Love, Ferrando in Cosí Fan tutte and Junki in the US premier of Rautavaara’s Aleksis Kivi. Other roles in the midwest included Dr. Caius in Falstaff and Basilio in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Pine Mountain Music Festival, Fenton in The Merry Wives of Windsor with the Dorian Opera Theatre and Frederick in a touring production of The Pirates of Penzance with the Madison-based Opera for the Young. He earned an honorable mention award in the 1998 Minnesota District Metropolitan Opera Auditions. Performances in Montana have included the roles of Edmondo in Manon Lescaut and Remendado in Carmen with Intermountain Opera Bozeman as well as Bach’s Magnificat and Handel’s Messiah with the Bozeman Symphony.
Harney has served as chorus master for the Intermountain Opera since 2002, preparing the choruses for productions of L’elisir d’amore, Aida, Lucia di Lammermoor, Cavalleria Rusticana, I Pagliacci, The Pirates of Penzance, Manon Lescaut, The Magic Flute, Carmen, La Boheme, The Ballad of Baby Doe, Il Trovatore and Il Barbiere di Siviglia.
Prior to coming to MSU-Bozeman, Harney was on the voice faculty of Macalester College and directed high school choirs in the North St. Paul school district. In 2001, Dr. Harney joined the MSU-Bozeman music faculty where he teaches studio voice lessons, opera scenes class and directs the University Chorus. In 2002, he was selected as one of twelve voice teachers nationwide to participate in the National Association of Teachers of Singing Intern Program working under master teacher Elaine Bonazzi. He served as president of the Montana Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing from 2007-2009. In summer 2008, Harney was selected to sing in the Westminster Choir College Chamber Choir in residence in Florence, Italy, singing under the direction of Joe Miller and in July 2010 sang under the direction of Dale Warland as part of the Festival Chorale at the Minnesota Beethoven Festival.