With “energy, creativity and charisma not seen since Leonard Bernstein,” and “vibrant,” “mind-blowing,” and “spectacular” conducting, BCCO Music Director Ming Luke is a versatile conductor who has excited audiences around the world. Highlights include conducting the Bolshoi Orchestra in Moscow and Romeo and Juliet and Cinderella at the Kennedy Center, making his English debut at Sadler’s Wells with Birmingham Royal, conducting Dvořák’s Requiem in Dvořák Hall in Prague, recording the score for a Coppola film, and conducting over a hundred performances at the San Francisco War Memorial with the San Francisco Ballet. He has been recognized nationally for his work with music education and has designed and conducted education concerts and programs with Berkeley Symphony, Houston Symphony, Sacramento Philharmonic, and San Francisco Ballet, and he currently serves as music director of the Merced Symphony, principal conductor of the Nashville Ballet, associate conductor of the Berkeley Symphony, and prinicipal guest conductor of the San Francisco Ballet. Allan Ulrich of the San Francisco Chronicle said, “Ming Luke delivered the best live theater performance I’ve ever heard of [Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet],” and BCCO’s War Requiem was named the best choral performance of 2016 in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Passionate about collaboration with dance companies and deepening the impact of movement to live music, Ming has guested with Boston Ballet, New York City Ballet Orchestra, Nashville Symphony/Ballet, San Diego Ballet, and others, and conducted l’Orchestre Prométhée in Paris as part of San Francisco’s residency with Les Étés de la Danse. Famed dancer Natalia Makarova stated, “Ming has a mixture of pure musicality and a sensitivity to needs of the dancers, which are such rare qualities.”
Ming has written, arranged, and performed over 150 education concerts with the Berkeley Symphony and has served on grant panels for the National Endowment of the Arts and the Grants and Cultural Committee of the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission. An exciting pops conductor, he has created and conducted pops concerts in many venues, from baseball stadiums to picnics with over 4,000 people in attendance, traditional concert halls, and recordings for Major League Baseball.
Ming holds a master of fine arts degree in conducting from Carnegie Mellon University and a bachelor of music degree in music education and piano pedagogy from Westminster Choir College of Rider University.