Conductor and composer Matthew Forte is Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of New Mexico, where he supervises all aspects of the institution’s orchestral program, conducts the University of New Mexico Symphony Orchestra, and teaches graduate and undergraduate conducting. Additionally, Matthew maintains an active association with the Aspen Music Festival and School, where he collaborates frequently with the AMFS Department of Education and has periodically served as guest faculty since 2016, and with the New Mexico Philharmonic, for which he frequently serves as a guest conductor.
Prior to his appointment in New Mexico, Matthew was Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of Toledo, where, in a three-year tenure, he more than doubled the size of the University of Toledo Symphony Orchestra, increasing that ensemble’s artistic standards and its visibility throughout the midwestern United States. Concurrent to this post, Matthew served on the conducting staff of the Toledo Symphony –where his primary duties were as a conductor of the Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras– and as one of the conductors of the Greater Toledo International Youth Orchestra –an organization with which he began an initiative to bring chamber orchestra music to diverse and underserved communities in northwest Ohio.
Matthew has collaborated with performing arts and educational institutions throughout the United States: he has worked with the St. Louis Symphony, the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, has taught at both Grand Valley State University and Sitka Fine Arts Camp, and serves currently as a member of the executive board of the Albuquerque Youth Symphony. In frequent demand as an educator and teacher of young musicians, he has recently conducted educational and honor orchestra events in Connecticut, Colorado, Kansas, Michigan, New Mexico, and Ohio.
Also a composer, Matthew had works premiered by Glass City Singers, Musique 21, the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, and at Sitka Fine Arts Camp, and as a composer frequently collaborates with performing arts organizations throughout the midwestern and southwestern U.S.
He received his bachelor’s degree, summa cum laude, from the Hartt School of the University of Hartford, where, upon graduation, he received the Belle K Ribicoff Prize for academic excellence; his master’s and doctoral degrees were earned at Michigan State University, where he was a Rasmussen Fellow and served as music director of the Michigan State University Concert Orchestra, work for which he received the 2017 MSU Distinguished Teaching Citation. His teachers include Glen Adsit, Edward Cumming, Kevin Noe, and Robert Spano.