Dr. Michael Huff was called “a triple threat” by none other than his former boss at Utah State University, Dr. Craig Jessop, owing to his versatility as a conductor, pianist, teacher, arranger, and show producer, and his uncommon comfort with nearly all genres of music – choir, band, orchestra, classical, jazz, and all forms of popular music. His career has followed an unusual arc that can be measured in decades – as Music Director at Lagoon and at theatres throughout Utah during the ‘80’s; in the ‘90’s as an event producer-sales-marketing-director producing college bowl game halftime shows and major festival events all over America; as a freelance conductor-player-producer-arranger and part-time professor at the University of Utah with stops at Westminster College and Weber State University in the ‘00’s; as a full-time professor at Utah State University from 2010 until 2013; and now helping to lead the Music Education-serving non-profit, Legacy Music Alliance (www.legacymusicalliance.org).
During all this time, Michael has never been off the podium, focusing primarily on choral music, as Conductor of the South Davis Civic Chorale & Orchestra from 1991-1998, Associate Conductor and Principal Accompanist for the Utah Symphony Chorus from 1994-2003, Conductor of the Salt Lake Symphonic Choir from 2007-2009, and now Artistic Director and Conductor for Utah Voices (www.utahvoices.org) since 2009. He will make his Carnegie Hall conducting debut with Utah Voices in June 2014, where they will give the New York premier of Kurt Bestor’s tone poem for chorus and large orchestra, Timpanogos: A Prayer for Mountain Grace.
Michael has been a guest conductor with the Salt Lake Symphony and American Festival Orchestra, and has appeared as a conductor-for-hire, with David Archuletta, Kurt Bestor, Diamond Rio, and most recently ARRIVAL from SWEDEN – the music of ABBA. His work as a show and event producer has him in regular contact with many of the world’s finest conductors and educators, and with international performing artists. One annual tradition among many: he has produced the half-time show at the Liberty Bowl in Memphis since 1989. He is also in regular demand assisting professional organizations with conferences, currently serving on the Organizing Committee as Program Chair for the upcoming National Conference of the American Choral Directors Association.
Michael holds the Bachelor of Music degree in Instrumental Music Education and the Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Utah, and the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Choral Conducting from Arizona State University. Of his unusual career path, he simply says, “I love music, and I love music-makers! This is a great ride.” He and his wife of 26 years have six children, and they agree, “life is never dull!”