Anne Harrigan, Music Director of the Billings Symphony Orchestra & Chorale and the Battle Creek Symphony Orchestra and Artistic Director of the Music Center of South Central Michigan, has earned a reputation throughout the country for her innovative programming, commitment to artistic excellence and community engagement.
Her commitment to innovation in programming has resulted in groundbreaking multi-disciplinary programs that have attracted national attention. These include the United States premiere of Shaun Davey’s “A Brendan Voyage,” a concerto for uilleann pipes and orchestra with the renowned piper Christopher Layer; collaborations with Alexander Streltsov, aerialist; silent movies with live orchestra; live video projections of performances; Peter Boyer’s “Ellis Island: Dream of America, ” a chronicle of the journey of seven immigrants through Ellis Island; and collaborations with late Montana photographer, Michael Sample.
Ms. Harrigan began her career at the age of 19 when she founded the Johns Hopkins University Chamber Orchestra while still a violin student at the Peabody Institute of Music. She received her Master’s degree in conducting at Yale University under the tutelage of Otto Werner Mueller. In 1983, Ms. Harrigan formed the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra and developed it from a fledgling organization to one of the finest chamber orchestras in the country.
Her interactive, multi-disciplinary family concert, “Colors of the World”, produced for television by Maryland Public Television, was recognized with an Emmy award in 1998. In addition, the BCO’s first compact disc recording, “Baltimore Chamber Orchestra Live,” received rave reviews.
Ms. Harrigan resides in Rockford, Michigan with her husband, Eric Hudson and daughter, Erin. When not conducting, she enjoys bicycling and cross-country skiing.
Dr. Steven Hart, now in his eighth season as the Billings Symphony Chorale Director, is a professor of music at Rocky Mountain College in Billings. He conducts choral ensembles and teaches conducting, vocal pedagogy and private voice. He completed his PhD at the University of Colorado, his MM at the University of South Dakota, and his BM at Western Michigan University.
Dr. Hart is active as a guest conductor and has presented master classes and clinics in California, Michigan, Indiana, Iowa, Montana, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. He was a guest conductor at the Annual International Conducting Workshop in Varna, Bulgaria. He is the conductor and founder of the High Plains Chamber Singers and conductor of the Billings Symphony Chorale.
His research interests draw from neuroscience, with specifi c focus on the physical manifestations of mental activity through the mind-body connection. He is the Collegiate Repertoire and Standards Chair for the Montana Music Educators Association and publishes articles for choral professionals. In preparing music ensembles for performance, Hart combines theater, sports psychology, neurolinguistics, music history and vocal pedagogy, to create the conditions for peak aesthetic experience.
Hart comes from a family of professional musicians. He began his performing career at age 9 in the title role of Oliver and at age 10 performed the title role of the Menott i opera Amahl and the Night Visitors. Hart enjoys rock climbing, hiking, skiing, and tennis.