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Knoxville Symphony Orchestra announces Aram Demirjian contract renewal through 2026

December 6, 2021

The Knoxville Symphony Orchestra board of directors has renewed Aram Demirjian’s contract as KSO music director for four more years, extending his tenure through the 2025-26 season.

“It is our great fortune that Aram Demirjian will continue to serve as the music director of the KSO for the next four years,” KSO Board President John T. Winemiller said. “Aram’s creativity and artistic excellence have brought tremendous energy to all aspects of the KSO, from concert programming to collaborations with local artists and arts organizations. Our community is stronger because of his presence here.”

Currently in his sixth season for the KSO, Demirjian has brought the orchestra to new artistic heights during his tenure. Demirjian’s visionary programming emphasizes cross-disciplinary collaboration with regional and national artistic leaders, including Big Ears Festival, Violins of Hope and the poetry collective, The 5th Woman.

Under Demirjian’s leadership, the KSO has launched multiple initiatives that have received national recognition, including KSO1x1 and KSO: UnStaged. Demirjian also helped spearhead the joint commission by KSO and Knoxville Museum of Art of the Cycle of Life violin concerto composed by Michael Schachter, which is featured on the PBS show, Craft in America, and will be performed by the KSO on April 21-22, 2022, at the Tennessee Theatre.

“I’m sure I speak on behalf of the entire KSO organization when I say that we are all excited to continue working with Aram,” KSO Executive Director Rachel Ford said. “We are looking forward to what he will bring to the stage in the coming years.”

Demirjian said, “I am humbled, honored and excited to extend my commitment to the KSO and the Knoxville community. I love Knoxville, I love our musicians, staff, board and League, and I am beyond eager to continue the work of sustaining and advancing a thriving orchestra that is essential to our audience and to the civic life of our city.”

Demirjian is the 2020 recipient of The Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award from The Solti Foundation U.S. His guest conducting highlights include engagements with the Philadelphia, Minnesota and Breckenridge Music Festival orchestras; the Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, New England Conservatory, North Carolina, Omaha, Portland, San Antonio, San Diego, St. Louis and Tucson symphonies; and the Louisiana and Orlando philharmonics. Demirjian holds a joint Bachelor of Arts in music and government from Harvard University and a Master of Music in orchestral conducting from New England Conservatory.

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About the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra
Led by Music Director Aram Demirjian, the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra consists of 80 professional musicians and performs 300 programs throughout the region each season, reaching audiences of more than 200,000 people. The KSO performs in traditional venues such as the Tennessee Theatre, Bijou Theatre and Civic Auditorium, as well as non-traditional places like hospitals, schools, city parks and churches. For more information regarding the KSO, please visit or call 865-291-3310.