Making his mark as a model for today’s conductors, Michael Butterman is recognized for his commitment to creative artistry, innovative programming, and audience and community engagement.
Learn More About Michael Butterman

He serves as Music Director for the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra, whom he has led to national prominence, resulting in an invitation to open the Kennedy Center’s inaugural SHIFT Festival of American Orchestras in 2017. He is also the Music Director of the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra and the Pennsylvania Philharmonic, an orchestra uniquely focused on music education. He has recently completed a 19-year association with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra as their Principal Conductor for Education and Community Engagement, and a 15-year tenure with the Jacksonville Symphony, first as Associate, and then as Resident Conductor.


As a guest conductor, Mr. Butterman has led many of the country’s preeminent ensembles, including the Cleveland Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, National Symphony, Detroit Symphony and Houston Symphony. In the 2019-20 season, he returns to the National Symphony on several occasions for performances at the Kennedy Center, and leads the North Carolina School of the Arts Symphony in a program featuring a new work by Grammy-nominated composer Chris Brubeck.


Other recent appearances include performances with the Colorado Symphony, Oregon Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Charleston Symphony, Hartford Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, Syracuse Symphony, New Mexico Symphony, Santa Fe Symphony, California Symphony, Louisiana Philharmonic, Spokane Symphony, El Paso Symphony, Mobile Symphony, Winston-Salem Symphony, Pensacola Opera, Asheville Lyric Opera and Victoria Symphony (British Columbia). Summer appearances include Tanglewood, the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, Colorado Music Festival, and the Wintergreen Music Festival in Virginia.


Mr. Butterman gained international attention as a diploma laureate in the Prokofiev International Conducting Competition and as a finalist in the prestigious Besançon International Conducting Competition. As the recipient of the Seiji Ozawa Fellowship, he studied at Tanglewood with Robert Spano, Jorma Panula, and Maestro Ozawa, and shared the podium with Ozawa to lead the season’s opening concert. Earlier, Mr. Butterman was sponsored by UNESCO to lead the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Moldova in a concert of music by great American masters.


For six seasons, Mr. Butterman served as Music Director of Opera Southwest in Albuquerque, NM. During much of that time, he was also Director of Orchestral Studies at the LSU School of Music and was Principal Conductor of the LSU Opera Theater. Previously, he held the post of Associate Conductor of the Columbus Pro Musica Orchestra, and served as Music Director of the Chamber Opera, Studio Opera, and Opera Workshop at the Indiana University School of Music. As its Associate Music Director, he led the Ohio Light Opera through two festivals, conducting over 35 performances each summer.


At Indiana University, Mr. Butterman conducted a highly acclaimed production of Leonard Bernstein’s little-known 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in a series of performances at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, receiving unanimous praise from such publications as The New York Times, Washington Post, Variety, and USA Today. He was subsequently invited to New York at the request of the Bernstein estate to prepare a performance of a revised version of the work.


Michael Butterman’s work has been featured in six nationwide broadcasts on American Public Media’s Performance Today. He can be heard on two CDs recorded for the Newport Classics label and on a new disc in which he conducts the Rochester Philharmonic and collaborates with actor John Lithgow.

Masterworks Performance

Awaken: A Benefit Concert for Ukraine

The Lancaster Symphony Orchestra will be standing with the people of Ukraine at these performances. A portion of all ticket sales will be directed towards Ukrainian humanitarian aid. We are also partnering with the Ukraine War Refugee Aid Fund set up by Bethany Slavic Church in Ephrata, PA, to accept donations at the concerts. We invite you to stand up to support those most affected by the brutal and unjustified attack on Ukraine.


  • Vaughan Williams Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis
  • Richter “Spring” from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, Recomposed
  • Respighi Ancient Airs and Dances, Suite No. 1
  • Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 2, “The Ukrainian”
Learn More About The Program

Awaken was created by our third music director finalist, Michael Butterman. His program was initially designed to highlight the way composers honor and draw inspiration from, and often directly quote, pre-existing music that was part of their cultural heritage.

Tchaikovsky’s Second Symphony, the central work on the program, was the composer’s way of honoring Ukraine, quoting numerous Ukrainian folk songs and melodies. While the work has a misleading nickname, the “Little Russian,” it was not Tchaikovsky, but the influential music critic Nikolai Kashkin credited with this subtitle. We have retitled the work, giving it its rightful name, “The Ukrainian,” at our April performances.

COVID-19 Safety Protocol

The LSO’s protocol is to follow CDC & local guidelines. Currently, that means masking is recommended but optional based on the rate of community spread. We reserve the right to revise guidelines ahead of the performance if recommendations change.

We are committed to ensuring that all our guests have a wonderful and safe concert experience. First Presbyterian Church installed a brand-new HVAC system last winter 2021 to assist with air circulation and filtration. Hand sanitizing stations will be available throughout, and we will be cleaning all areas before & and after each performance. We recommend all our guests become fully vaccinated before attending a concert. If you are experiencing any of the following, we ask that you stay home:

  • If you are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
  • If you are waiting for the results of a pending COVID-19 test.
  • If you are under a healthcare provider’s care for a positive COVID-19 test.
  • If you have been exposed to COVID-19 and have not received a negative test result.

We will be monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic daily and are prepared to follow all CDC and State guidelines. We will make decisions about mask requirements and social distancing ahead of each performance on a program-by-program basis.

Concert Dates:
Friday, April 8, 2022
@ 7:30pm

Saturday, April 9, 2022
@ 3:00pm & 8:00pm

First Presbyterian Church
140 E Orange St.
Lancaster, PA 17602

Single tickets $35-$75. Subscribe and save 20% or more!

Experience a new lso

Celebrate our 75th anniversary season with celebrated guest conductors, innovative programs, and a search for a new Music Director.