Guest Artists

Salt Lake Symphony is committed to keeping Utah music alive by working with local soloists and composers.

> Guest artists from past seasons


Matthew Mainella

Photo of Matthew Mainella - Guest Artist Matthew Mainella is a conductor, composer, arranger, and educator. He has led professional, community, college, and youth orchestras, wind bands, choirs, and multiple stage productions. Before coming to the Salt Lake City area, Mr. Mainella served asAssistant Conductor of the Valdosta (GA) Symphony Orchestra, and wasMusic Director of the Peach State Summer Theatre, designated the Official Musical Theatre of the State of Georgia. This past year he was a guest conductor in the American Guild of Organists’ Western Region convention. Also in 2017 he led premieres of several new works written by University of Utah composition students. Mr. Mainella is Principal Conductor of the University of Utah Campus Symphony Orchestra.

Complete Biography

Gerald Elias

Photo of Gerald Elias - Guest Conductor A former violinist with the Boston Symphony and longtime associate concertmaster of the Utah Symphony, Gerald Elias has performed on five continents as violinist, conductor, composer, and educator. Since 2004, he has been music director of the popular Vivaldi by Candlelight chamber orchestra series in Salt Lake City. He continues to perform with the Boston Symphony at their Tanglewood summer festival and in 2019 helped establish and conducted the inaugural Baroque string orchestra of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. Elias was first violin of the Abramyan String Quartet from 1993-2003 and has been a faculty member of the University of Utah School of Music since 1989. He has had the distinct pleasure of guest conducting the Salt Lake Symphony on two previous occasions.

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John Costa

Photo of John Costa - Guest Composer John Costa received his DMA from The University of Michigan (1994) where he has been a recipient of the Regents Fellowship, The Christine Rinaldo Memorial Scholarship, and The Eugene & Sayde Power Fellowship In The Performing Arts. His teachers have included Fred Lerdahl, Michael Daugherty, George Balch Wilson, William Albright, Eugene Kurtz, and William Bolcom.

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Julie Wright-Costa

Photo of Julie Wright-Costa - Guest Artist Soprano Julie Wright Costa enjoys a rich and varied career that includes opera, musical theatre, oratorio, recital, and concert works. Her warm and flexible voice and dramatic acting skills account for her enthusiastic reception wherever she performs. As one of Ohio Light Opera’s leading sopranos for sixteen seasons, Ms. Wright Costa is regarded as one of the country’s outstanding interpreters of operetta. In addition to her role as performer, she serves as Associate Artistic Director with the Ohio Light Opera. She is featured on several compact disc recordings with the Albany, Operetta Archives and Newport Classics Label, including such works as Kálmán’s La Bayadere and Sari, Sullivan’s Princess Idaand The Yeoman of the Guard, Berté's Das Dreimäderlhaus, and the soon to be releasedDer Vogelhändler by Carl Zeller.

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Kelly DeHaan

Photo of Kelly DeHaan - Guest Artist Kelly DeHaan received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in choral education and choral conducting from the University of Utah. Kelly has been teaching high school choir at his beloved West Jordan High School since 1997 and is devoted to his students.

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Utah Voices

Photo of Utah Voices - Guest Artist Utah Voices is a group of volunteer singers varying in skill: some have no previous choral experience while others have received professional vocal training. Some are still learning to read music; others are practiced sight-readers. The choir members range in age from young adults to senior citizens and are a mixture of business people, students, educators, engineers, homemakers, and retirees. They are enthusiastic about their mission and about making choral involvement a priority in their lives, dedicating their talents to each other and to the community. Although members do not audition to join, the artistic staff expects capabilities beyond those of the average community chorus. The choir strives for a higher level of musicality in order to offer concertgoers unforgettable choral concert experiences, providing inspiration, excitement, fun, and nostalgia. Utah Voices was created by a handful of dedicated, hardworking people who love to sing. It is the culmination of the dreams and united vision of individuals who are passionate about making music.

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JinHyoun Baek

Photo of JinHyoun Baek - Guest Artist Maestro Jin BAEK(DMA, Dr.S.Arts) is an Artistic Director of Gyeongbuk Philharmonic Orchestra and Busan Festival Orchestra. He is an Artistic director of Busan Maru International Music Festival. He has also been a Principal Guest Conductor of China's Tianjin Symphony Orchestra since 2004. He had been in the position of an Artistic Director of Masan Philharmonic Orchestra for nine years from 2003.

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Bo Wu

Photo of Bo Wu - Guest Artist Bo Wu is Director of Orchestra Activities at the Wuhan University and Wuhan University Petrel Choir music director. He is also Hunan University Orchestra music director, permanent conductor.

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Jie Yuan

Photo of Jie Yuan - Guest Artist Chinese pianist Jie YUAN is regarded as one of the most successful young pianists in China. He is awarded as "Top Ten Chinese Pianists" by China Central Television and was praised by the New York Times with the statement: "his perfect technical and musicality no doubt make him a leader in this generation of pianists". Top prize winners of Cliburn, Busoni, Casagrande, Bechstein, Shanghai, Hamamatsu, Crescendo, Seattle and Hong Kong international piano competitions, he has concerts throughout all five continents in over 40 countries and regions, towering nearly 600 cities. He has performed in the Carnegie Hall, the Vienna Wiener Musikverein, the Frankfurt Opera House, the National Centre for the Performing Arts in China and many others, he has also worked with New York Philharmonic, Dresden Philharmonic, China National Symphony Orchestra, and over hundred many others orchestras. Jie is a recipient of the prestigious Artist Diploma from the Juilliard School and Performance Certificate from the Lake Como International Piano Academy. He is now positing in two major conservatories in China: the Chair of Piano Department at Harbin Conservatory of Music, Vice President and the Chair of Piano Department at JiLin University of Arts. He is also the artistic directors of four international festivals: Hangzhou Festival, Harbin Festival, Lanzhou Festival and China International Piano Festival. Jie YUAN has served as the jury for many international competitions, includes Animato in Paris, Busoni in Bolzano, German Piano Award in Frankfurt, and Seoul, Macau, Taiwan, Portuguese, Hong Kong International Piano Competition and many others.

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Kris Johnson

Photo of Kris Johnson - Guest Artist Kris Johnson is an award-winning trumpeter, composer, and educator. He has appeared on an impressive list of albums including five Grammy-nominated releases. The most recent is the Grammy-Nominated Concord Jazz album “All About That Basie” from the Count Basie Orchestra that features three of Kris’s arrangements for big band. Kris toured the world as a trumpeter and arranger with the Count Basie Orchestra from 2008-2019 and in 2013 he was featured in the standup-comedy film “Make Me Wanna Holla” starring Sinbad.

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