Priestman, Brian

Alternative names
Birth 1927-02-10
Latin, English

Biographical notes:

Brian Priestman was born in 1927 in Birmingham, England. He served in the British military in the late 1940s, and earned a bachelor's and masters' degree in music from the University of Birmingham, as well as an advanced degree from the Conservatoire Royal de Bruxelles in Belgium.

He returned to England and, from 1952-1954, worked at the Yorkshire Symphony Orchestra as an apprentice conductor. He went on to work for the Philomusica of London and the Royal Shakespeare Company.

In 1964, he came to North America, first to lead the Edmonton Symphony in Canada, then, beginning in 1970, to lead the Denver Symphony Orchestra. Priestman left Denver in 1978. After leaving Denver, he led the Florida Philharmonic for two years. He has also served as principal conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, as well as guest conductor with orchestras in the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia. He has conducted more than 300 performances on the BBC, as well as two national tours with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. He served as Professor and Head of the Department of Music at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.

Priestman joined the University of Kansas (KU) music faculty as artist in residence and orchestra conductor in the fall of 1992. He made his debut performance as conductor of the KU Symphony Orchestra on October 2, 1992. Priestman's final performance as conductor of the KU Symphony Orchestra was on May 4, 2002.

From the guide to the Personal Papers of Brian Priestman, ca. 1950s, (University of Kansas Kenneth Spencer Research Library University Archives)


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  • Te Deum laudamus (Music)


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