Conductors Institute of South Carolina Aiken Symphony Orchestra 1

The 2019 Conductors Institute of South Carolina will hold a free, public concert at 11 a.m. June 17 in Room 125 of the Etherredge Center on the campus of USC Aiken. The free concert will be conducted by the institute's participants and performed by professional musicians and members of the Aiken Symphony Orchestra.

The public can attend the 2019 Conductors Institute of South Carolina concert at 11 a.m. June 17 in Room 125 of the Etherredge Center on the campus of USC Aiken.

The free concert will be conducted by the institute's participants and performed by professional musicians and members of the Aiken Symphony Orchestra.

For the last 40 years, Dr. Donald Portnoy, the director of the institute and conductor of the Aiken Symphony Orchestra, has offered both a 15-day and an 11-day workshop for budding and veteran conductors alike, according to a news release from USCA.

"I know of nowhere else in the United States where students can receive daily, on-the-spot training in front of a professional ensemble for two weeks," said Kate Tamarkin, a former Conductors Institute of South Carolina attendee.

Conductors Institute of South Carolina Aiken Symphony Orchestra 2

Dr. Donald Portnoy conducts the Aiken Symphony Orchestra. The public can attend the 2019 Conductors Institute of South Carolina concert at 11 a.m. June 17 in Room 125 of the Etherredge Center on the campus of USC Aiken. The free concert will be conducted by the institute's participants and performed by professional musicians and members of the Aiken Symphony Orchestra.

As part of the program, attendees will have the opportunity to conduct groups of musicians, ranging in size from quartets to symphonies. Participants honing their professional skills will also conduct the Aiken Symphony Orchestra.

"I find it to be the best conceived and executed of the many workshops and training classes currently available to young conductors. Each conductor receives a significant amount of podium time, working with a first-rate, professional orchestra on both standard repertoire and new works by living American composers,” said Paul Vermel, the conductor emeritus of the Northwest Symphony Orchestra. "Whether these conductors become professional music directors of orchestras, performing musicians or music teachers, the training provided at the Conductors Institute is immensely valuable to them."

Guest conductors and composers for the 2019 series will include Victoria Bond, composer and conductor; Neil Casey, conductor; Dick Goodwin, composer; Peter Jaffee, conductor; David Kirkland Garner, composer; and Portnoy.

The public can sit in on any of the classes, during which workshop attendees will be conducting, from 9 a.m. to noon through June 22 in Room 125 of the Etherredge Center.

The Conductors Institute of South Carolina is one of the longest-running events of its type in the United States, according to organizers. Some in the industry consider this event a "must do" for both young, aspiring and experienced conductors, according to the news release.

Larry Wood covers education for the Aiken Standard.