Argentinian-Mexican conductor Alex Amsel has quickly established himself as a conductor equally at home with orchestral and operatic repertoire, as well as a music educator for students of all ages. Amsel’s hope is to integrate music into the fabric of every community he works with to reshape how we think about society and our place in it. Amsel is currently a Music Director Finalist for the Elgin Symphony in Illinois. He joins the Houston Grand Opera as Resident Conductor for the 2022-2023 season where he will lead performances of Verdi's La Traviata and premiering Jeremy Howard Beck’s Another City. Amsel spent 3 successful seasons with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra where he was appointed Assistant Conductor by Robert Spano and led the orchestra in a variety of concerts including Symphonic, Chamber and Education/Outreach concerts. Amsel was also selected for the prestigious Aspen Conducting Academy for the 2020 and 2021 summers where he worked closely with Robert Spano and Patrick Summers.
In high demand for summer seasons as both performer and educator, Amsel has led orchestras at Aspen Music Festival, National Repertory Orchestra, Round Top Music Festival, and Philadelphia International Music Festival. For the summer of 2019, Amsel was selected as the Assistant Conductor for the National Repertory Orchestra in Breckenridge, Colorado, where he led the orchestra in multiple subscription concerts.
An avid educator, Amsel is continually trying to advance what classical music can do for audiences. Recently, he has completely reshaped the education programs at the Fort Worth Symphony in order to let music be the aid for societal growth and respect by creating programs that emphasize the inclusion of minority and underrepresented composers and artists, as well as centering the concerts around the themes of teamwork, inclusivity, and learning about different cultures. His approach of creating programs that unify the students' school curriculum while exposing them to the magic and wondrous world of music has been highly regarded by arts organizations and school educators alike. His desire to aid students through music sees him as a frequent clinician at schools of all levels. During his time in Peabody, he served the Baltimore community in several ways through the Creative Leadership Immersion and Implementing Social Development programs. These programs helped connect the conservatory to the greater Baltimore community by helping emerging music programs at low-income schools. Amsel supported students in creating original compositions that reflect their daily lives while discussing the importance of music and how it can supplement a young person’s life through communication, open discussions, and vocal leadership. He has been a featured performer and taught masterclasses through these organizations, as well as having had an active private bassoon studio of 30 weekly students in Austin and Houston, Texas.
Contemporary music is at the forefront in Amsel's musical journey and has premiered works both as conductor and instrumentalist. He has led recording sessions of world premieres at Peabody Conservatory as well as Rice University's Shepherd School of Music. He continues to be an advocate for living composers, with an emphasis on underrepresented composers that represent each community that he works in, and has continuously programmed works by Carlos Simon, Jessie Montgomery, Eleanor Alberga, Victor Agudelo, and Carlos Zamora among others. Amsel was selected to work as an Associate at the Cabrillo Music Festival with Cristian Macelaru, and was subsequently invited to return as the Assistant Conductor of the festival for the 2019 season.
Amsel completed his studies under the tutelage of Marin Alsop at the Peabody Conservatory as her Graduate Assistant while working towards his Masters in Music in Orchestral Conducting. While at Peabody, he was appointed Choir Master and Assistant Conductor of both the Opera Theatre and Choruses, where he led performances of Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore and Massanet’s Cherubin. Amsel has also worked closely with Larry Rachleff, Cristian Macelaru, Hugh Wolff and Miguel Harth-Bedoya as well as having appeared in masterclasses with David Zinman, David Effron, Nicholas McGeegan, and Hannu Lintu. He also holds degrees from New England Conservatory and The University of Texas in Austin.
During his free time, Amsel is a biking, architecture, wine, and Golden Retriever aficionado.
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