Michael Lewanski, conductor

Michael Lewanski headshot

Conductor, educator, and writer Michael Lewanski is a champion of new music and old repertoire alike. His work seeks to create deep and engaged connections between audiences, musicians, and the music that is part of their culture, history, and psychology. Based in Chicago, he is conductor of Ensemble Dal Niente and Associate Professor of instrumental ensembles at the DePaul University School of Music. His recent and upcoming guest-conducting spans a wide range of cultural institutions from work with Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and chamber ensembles from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, to the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra of Turkmenistan, and CEPROMUSIC (the state-sponsored new music ensemble of Mexico).  Michael has an extensive discography as both conductor and producer with Ensemble Dal Niente, Spektral Quartet, Third Coast Percussion, Ensemble 20+, and others.

A native of Savannah, Georgia, he studied piano and violin in his youth; he made his conducting debut at age 13, leading his own composition.  At 16, he was the youngest-ever student in the legendary Ilya Musin’s class at the St. Petersburg Conservatory in Russia. He attended Yale University; he subsequently studied with Cliff Colnot and Lucas Vis.