Roderick Cox Assistant Conductor and Music Director/Principal Conductor of the Alabama Symphony Youth Orchestra
Roderick Cox is assistant conductor of the Alabama Symphony Orchestra and music director of the Alabama Symphony Youth Orchestra. A native of Macon, Georgia, he has been recognized nationally as a gifted young conductor, described as "uncommonly talented" and "extremely musical" by the late James DePreist.
Cox will make his subscription concert debut with the Macon Symphony Orchestra in the 2013-2014 season. In 2013, Cox was selected as a conducting fellow for the acclaimed American Academy of Conducting at the Aspen Music Festival where he will work with conductors Robert Spano and Larry Rachleff. David Robertson invited Cox to conduct the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra in a masterclass in conjunction with the League of American Orchestra's national conference. He was chosen as the 2012 David Effron Conducting Fellow at the Chautauqua Music Festival in New York where he studied with Timothy Muffitt. Cox was selected as a semi-finalist for the 2013 Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview and for two consecutive summers by Marin Alsop as a conductor to attend the Conductors Guild Conductor/Composer Training Workshop at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music.
A champion of contemporary music and living composers, Roderick Cox opened the orchestra's award-winning Classical Edge Series in 2013 with new music by Gabriel Kahane and Andrew Norman. "Keeping it all together was ASO Assistant Conductor Roderick Cox," wrote The Birmingham News. Cox "artfully managed the score's rhythmic complexities with its orchestral color, energy and reflection."
He's led special-event concerts, including the annual tribute to Martin Luther King Jr., which was awarded a 5-star review and drew a capacity crowd – by far the largest audience in the concert's history. Cox and the ASO commissioned and premiered two pieces by Henry Panion, commemorating the Civil Rights struggle in Birmingham. With the Alabama Symphony Orchestra, Cox also conducts the annual Explorer and Young People's Concerts, run-out concerts and the free Railroad Park outdoor concerts, which reach as many as 10,000 listeners.
Cox is deeply devoted to music education and innovative approaches to community outreach. As music director of the Alabama Symphony Youth Orchestra, he is seeing record ticket sales and growth in overall student participation. In April 2011, he helped organize and conduct a concert of film music to benefit The People's Music School in Chicago. The concert was an effort to provide free music lessons for less fortunate families of the community who wish to expose their children to classical music but without the means to do so. He is also an active volunteer with the Big O' Youth Foundation in Macon, GA.
Cox earned his Master of Music degree in conducting from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. His conducting teachers were Mallory Thompson and Victor Yampolsky. Influential conductors and pedagogues such as Marin Alsop, Mei-Ann Chen, Gustav Meier, Larry Rachleff, Donald Schleicher, Robert Spano, Mark Gibson, and Adrian Gnam, have shaped his education as a conductor. In May 2009, Cox graduated summa cum laude from Columbus State University's Schwob School of Music, where he received his Bachelors Degree in music education and studied conducting with Robert Rumbelow.
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