Bruce Ferden, B.M. ’71

Bruce Ferden, B.M. ’71University of Miami School of Music 1993 Distinguished Alumnus Bruce Ferden, B.M. ’71 gained international recognition as a conductor and musical director, leading orchestras throughout the United States, Europe and Africa.

At the age of 25, after working with Peter Herman Adler at the American Opera Center, Ferden was appointed assistant conductor of the New York Philharmonic. He later became music director of the Spokane Symphony for six seasons, the Nebraska Chamber Orchestra for nine years, and general music director of symphony and opera for the city of Aachen in Germany. Ferden’s conducting engagements took him from the Metropolitan Opera, where he led the 1992 world premiere of Philip Glass’ The Voyage, to the Dallas Opera, Pittsburgh Symphony and Kiel (Germany) Symphony. In 1980, Ferden conducted the world premiere of Glass’ Satyagraha at the Netherlands Opera and later the European premiere of the composer’s The Making of the Representative for Planet 8.

Ferden made his Seattle Opera debut in 1988 with Rigoletto, followed by Satyagraha, The Tales of Hoffmann, Rusalka, Lucia di Lammermoor, and Aida. He conducted Lucia di Lammermoor for the Dallas Opera, as well as a triple bill of Manuel de Falla operas. He also recorded “The Music of Elinor Remick Warren” with baritone Thomas Hampson, and the Polish Radio and Television Orchestra in Krakow, Poland.

A popular guest conductor, Ferden led many world premieres as well as works of the standard repertoire with such noted artists as Montserrat Caballé and Marilyn Horne.

Ferden died of AIDS in 1993 at the age of 44.