Join us on campus for our Honor String Orchestra November 18-20, 2022. String players in grades 9-12 are eligible to be nominated for this enriching orchestral experience.


Apply to attend the High School Honor String Orchestra weekend below. Application due date: October 14, 2022.

Application Procedure

Honor String Orchestra Highlights

  • Making music in an artistically rigorous and nurturing environment with exceptional string musicians from across six states
  • Rehearsing and performing challenging repertoire under the direction of our director of orchestral activities, Dr. Kevin Sütterlin.

Guest Conductor

Dr. Alejandra Urrutia

Alejandra is the 2020 recipient of the Mahler Award given by the Mahler Society of Mexico, which has been also granted to Sir Simon Rattle, Bernard Haitink and Gustavo Dudamel, among others.

During this year 2021 she won the "Special Prize" at the Only Stage International Conducting Competition (UK), which consists of six months of support and consulting with her international career and was chosen as a finalist of the Lanyi Conducting Competition 2021 (Serbia) and will also make her debut with the Biel Solothurn Symphony Orchestra in Switzerland. 

Alejandra Urrutia is Music Director of the Chamber Orchestra of Teatro Municipal de Santiago National Opera of Chile. She was Music Director of the Chilean Chamber Orchestra and, previously, the Provincial Symphony Orchestra of Santa Fe, Argentina, for three years. She is also the Artistic and Music Director of the Portillo International Music Festival & Academy and the Grand Concert for Siblinghood (Gran Concierto por la Hermandad). She is a Resident Conductor of the Orchestra of the Americas.

Since 2017 she has been assistant conductor to Maestro Ivan Fischer with the Budapest Festival Orchestra and the Konzerthausorchester Berlin.

In January 2019 after many years working with the youth orchestra of Curanilahue and observing the transformation that music has in the lives of young musicians, their families and the community, Alejandra launched one of the most innovative projects in Chile: the Portillo International Music Festival & Academy, an initiative for the instruction of young musicians in the majestic Andes Mountains. The Academy focuses on learning the chamber music repertoire under the guidance of international teachers, in addition to classes of leadership, coaching and hatha-yoga for promoting a holistic development of Latin America’s great talents.

As creator and conductor of the Grand Concert for Siblinghood, Alejandra brings together more than 150 instrumentalists and a citizen choir of more than 200 people every year under the motto "Music as a common territory" for this beautiful project born as a message of unity with our immigrant brothers and sisters in Chile. In January 2020, after conducting Gustav Mahler's Second Symphony, "Resurrection", Alejandra was given the Mahler Award 2020 by the Mahler Society of Mexico.

Ale has the ability to move from a powerful and intense Mahler to Mozart's refinement and subtlety in less than a heartbeat. She is one of those conductors who understand the power of silence in both music and life. She blends a deep and permanent calm with her intense love of music. Combining a great neatness with a simple nature, Ale continues to explore new horizons and find unexpected results in both established and new works.

Born in Concepción, Chile, she studied with famous maestros such as Robert Spano and Hugh Wolff at the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen, as well as in courses with Marin Alsop, Kenneth Kiesler, Gustav Meier, Hans Graf, Larry Radcleff and Murry Sidlin. She has worked internationally as conductor, violinist and educator with a masters and doctorate from the University of Michigan.

Throughout her artistic career, she has worked with orchestras in Europe, North America and Latin America, including: Ensamble Orchestral du Paris in France, National Arts Centre Orchestra in Canada; Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music Orchestra, New York Chamber Players and the Orchestra of the American Academy of Conducting of Aspen in the United States; Buenos Aires Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestral Academy of Teatro Colón, Mendoza Philharmonic Orchestra (with pianist Bruno Gelber), and the Provincial Symphony Orchestras of Rosario, Bahía Blanca, and Córdoba in Argentina; UFF National Symphony Orchestra in Niteroi, Brazil, and the Montevideo Philharmonic and Sodre Symphony orchestras in Uruguay. In Chile, she has worked with the main orchestras of the country, including: National Symphony Orchestra of Chile (performing the first concert ever on Easter Island in 2014 with pianist Mahani Teave, and working as a guest conductor in the summer season of 2015 at the Frutillar Music Festival, Concepción Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra of the Catholic University of Chile, Chamber Orchestra of Valdivia, La Serena Symphony Orchestra, Classical Orchestra of the University of Santiago, Los Ríos Philharmonic Orchestra and Maule Regional Orchestra.

In 2016, violinist Dorian Lamotte, with Emmanuele Thery from the Belgian label “Le Chant de Linos,” invited Alejandra to explore and record together music by Latin American composers.  In January 2017, with the Chilean Chamber Orchestra, they recorded Enrique Soro’s Danza d'Amore, Primavera, Tempo di Gavotta, and Romanza sin Palabras; Vicente Bianchi’s Momento Andino; Santiago Vera-Rivera’s Orogenika II for violin and orchestra, and Esteban D'Antona’s Suite for Violin and Orchestra “Camino al Norte”. In February 2013, she recorded an album for CRS Artists with the New York Chamber Players with works by American composers, including John Schlenck's Fanfare and Variations for Chamber Orchestra, John Russo's Three Studies for Clarinet and Orchestra, and Giacomo Francis’ Three Variations on a Theme of Michael Levy for Piano and Orchestra.  In November 2012, she worked with the American composer Gabriela Lena Frank in the premiere of her Suite Compadre Huashayo, a classical work including roots of Andean music and performed on that occasion by a unique ensemble: Orchestra of Andean Instruments of Quito.  A documentary of this work has been edited for the American PBS channel.  On the same year, she recorded the album "Dos Conciertos Latinoamericanos" with Chilean guitarist Carlos Pérez and the Classical Orchestra of the University of Santiago, with concertos by Leo Brouwer and Antonio Lauro.

Alejandra Urrutia is a Fanjul & Ward artist.


Matthew Winarski

Manager of Instrumental Ensembles Music