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Eckart Preu

Music Director

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Meet Eckart Preu

Eckart Preu is the Music Director of the Portland Symphony Orchestra, the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra (CA), and the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra (OH).
Previously, he was the Music Director of the Spokane Symphony (WA) and the Stamford Symphony (CT), Associate Conductor of the Richmond Symphony (VA), and Resident Conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra and the American Russian Young Artists Orchestra. Also, Preu served as Music Director of the Orchestre International de Paris.
Career highlights include performances at Carnegie Hall, the Sorbonne in Paris, a live broadcast with the Jerusalem Symphony, and the world premiere of Letters from Lincoln as his first commercial recording – a work commissioned by the Spokane Symphony from Michael Daugherty, featuring baritone soloist Thomas Hampson. He has collaborated with internationally-renowned soloists including Sarah Chang, Anne Akiko Meyers, Jean-Phillipe Collard, Vladimir Feltsman, Horacio Gutiérrez, Leila Josefowicz, Louis Lortie, and Richard Stoltzman.
In addition, Preu has conducted the Jerusalem Symphony (Israel), Symphony Orchestra of Chile, Philharmonic Orchestra of Bogota (Columbia), Orquesta Filarmonica de Jalisco (Mexico), Auckland Philharmonia (New Zealand), and the Symphony Orchestra of Tenerife in Spain.
Preu was a PSO guest conductor in the 2010-11 season.
A native of Germany, Preu came to the United States as the winner of the National Conducting Competition of the German Academic Exchange Service (1996) to study with Harold Farberman at the Hartt School of Music, where he also received the Karl Boehm Scholarship. In Germany, he earned a Master’s degree in conducting from the Hochschule für Musik in Weimar studying under Gunter Kahlert and Nicolás Pasquet. He also studied under Jean-Sébastien Béreau at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris in France. Preu’s education was made possible by scholarships from the Herbert von Karajan Foundation, the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, and the French Ministry of Culture. Preu’s early musical training was in piano and voice. At age ten he became a member of the Boys’ choir Dresdner Kreuzchor and went on to work with them as soloist and assistant conductor. Preu currently resides in New York.
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2425 chamber series

Announcing the all new Chamber Series

In honor of its 100th anniversary season, the Portland Symphony Orchestra steps beyond Merrill Auditorium and brings the music to you.

This all-new Chamber Music series celebrates the intimate and artistically vibrant nature of small musician led groups as they perform on stages throughout the state of Maine.


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Never been to a symphony before? Don’t worry, we’re here to help

Find the answers to all the questions about the orchestra you may be too afraid to ask!

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Bring your class to a youth concert

Coming in 2025… The Portland Symphony Orchestra partners with Carnegie Hall to present Link Up: The Orchestra Sings! Link Up is a fully participatory, school-day concert program. Students will fill Merrill Auditorium to sing, play recorders, move, and listen along with the symphony from their seats. This program is designed for students in grades 3-5 but all are welcome and encouraged to participate!

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Ticket sales cover only a portion of what it takes to produce the PSO’s artistic and education programs. Your generous support is vital in helping us deliver music programs that serve children and adult listeners.


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Meet the PSO’s Music Director


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