• Conductors

    Get to know our conductors


    Chris Younghoon Kim

    Director of Orchestras

    Passionate about working with young musicians and music education, Chris Younghooon Kim is the Director of Orchestras at Cornell University and is an active adjudicator, guest clinician, and masterclass teacher. The League of American Orchestras and ASCAP have awarded the first place award for Adventurous Programming of Contemporary Music to the Cornell Orchestras among all collegiate orchestras in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014. With the Cornell Orchestras, he has led international tours and joint collaborations with the Royal Irish Academy of Music, and Conservatorio de Musica de Puerto Rico. Before coming to Cornell, Chris was active in the new music scene in Boston conducting the Firebird Ensemble and the Kalistos Chamber Orchestra. Since 1997 he has been the Artistic Director of the new music ensemble Brave New Works in Ann Arbor, Michigan one of America’s most innovative and progressive ensembles. He has appeared with orchestras in the United States and abroad, including ensembles such as the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Delta Festival Ballet, Symphoria based in Syracuse, NY, Divertimento Ensemble of Milan, Italy. He has also appeared in music festivals such as Kinhaven Music Center, Skaneateles Music Festival, International Bartok Festival in Szombathely, Hungary among others. He is an active promoter of music of our time, and has collaborated with dozens of composers, and commissioned and premiered numerous new works. He was recently chosen to be one of three young conductors to appear at the Ensemble Moderne Academy in Innsbruck, Austria being mentored by members of Ensemble Moderne at the 2012 Klangspuren new music festival. He has also been chosen as one of four conductors to take part in the College Orchestra Directors Association’s Ibermusicas initiative in 2014 and will guest conduct Orquesta Sinfónica del Neuquén, Patagonia, Argentina. In 2008, he made his Carnegie Hall conducting debut as part of Royal Irish Academy Chamber Orchestra’s East Coast Tour of the United States with a world premiere of Evan Chambers’s Concerto for Violin, Irish fiddle and string orchestra.



    Katherine Kilburn

    Interim Orchestra Director of CSO and CCO for 2019-2020

    Recipient of the Thelma A. Robinson Conducting Award, Ms. Kilburn has been Assistant Conductor of the National Repertory Orchestra, the El Paso Opera, the Hot Springs Music Festival, the Bowling Green State University Philharmonia, and the St. Louis Symphony Chorus, as well as Conductor of the Interlochen Arts Academy Wind Ensemble, Music Director and Conductor of the Greater New Haven Youth and Chamber Orchestras, Conductor of the Rhode Island Philharmonic Youth Repertory Orchestra, Interim Director of the Vermont Youth Orchestra Association’s Philharmonia, and Guest Conductor of the Mansfield Symphony Orchestra, the Lawrence University Symphony Orchestra, the Green Bay Symphony, Ensemble X, Cleveland Opera Theater, the Lawrence University Opera Theater and the Baldwin Wallace Symphony Orchestra.

    Ms. Kilburn assisted Sir Simon Rattle for performances of Peter Grimes at the Salzburg Easter Festival, and toured with world-renowned clarinetists David Shifrin and Alexander Fiterstein. She has conducted numerous world and USA-premieres and has been involved in several premiere recordings including some on the Naxos American Classics/Milken Archive label. She has conducted in the Cabrillo Music Festival, the MidAmerican Center for Contemporary Music Festival, the Philadelphia International Music Festival, and the Sewanee Summer Music Festival. Ms. Kilburn was Interim Director of Orchestras at Kent State University where she also taught conducting and conducted the operas. Previous to that she was on faculty at Baldwin Wallace Conservatory where she was the Composition Program Performance Coordinator, guest conducted the Baldwin Wallace Symphony Orchestra, and was on the conducting faculty.

    Ms. Kilburn is currently Interim Director of Orchestras at Cornell University while maintaining a regular schedule of guest conducting, adjudicating, and being a clinician at festivals around the US. Ms. Kilburn studied conducting at the Conservatoire Darius Milhaud in France and at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Her teachers include Kenneth Kiesler and Emily Freeman Brown. DMA Contemporary Music, Bowling Green State University, MM in Orchestral Conducting, University of Michigan, MM Choral Conducting, Indiana University, BA Music/French, Wellesley College. She currently makes her home in Ithaca, New York with her husband and their two children, Luana and Sebastián.

  • Previous Conductors


    Guest conductors

    Katherine Kilburn [interim director 2019-2020]

    Adrian Slywotzky [interim director Spring 2019]

    Kisun Sung [interim director Spring 2016]

    Rachel Lauber [interim director Spring 2011]

    CJT [guest conductor of CSO Spring 2008]

    Scott Tucker [guest conductor of CCO Spring 2008]


    Previous conductors

    2000 - 2004 John Hsu

     about his final concert

     about his teaching

     his bio on music dept website


    1975 - 1999 Edward Murray

     about his teaching

     remembrance concert


    1954 - 1975 Karel Husa

     about his teaching

     90th birthday concert

     Cornell Sun on his first concert at Cornell


    1950 - 1954 Robert Hull

    (if you have info please contact us)


    1947 - 1950 missing information

    (if you have info please contact us)


    1943 - 1947? John M. Kuypers

    (if you have info please contact us)


    1941 - 1942 Ronald Ingalls

    he conducted the Sinfonietta beginning from 1936 but took over after Coleman retired

    (if you have more info please contact us)


    1905 - 1941 George L. Coleman

     article about founding of the orchestra

     his final concert


    List of all Cornell Orchestra concerts from 1905 - current (We do have missing info, if you have info you can share with us to complete this list, please contact us).