JERE LANTZ, Music Director Emeritus

Jere Lantz was Music Director of Rochester Symphony for 42 years. His musical commitment to Rochester and the region was the defining work of his career and legacy. His engaging stories from the stage, deep knowledge of music history and unique interpretations of the world’s great classical music created programs that were loved by both symphonic music aficionados as well as those new to the world of classical music.

Throughout his career, Maestro Lantz was passionate about providing space for emerging or under-recognized artists – soloists, composers, or orchestral musicians. Many times, artists who soloed with Rochester Symphony were musicians who were on the cusp of great careers but our audiences heard them first because Maestro Lantz gave them the opportunity before they had made a name for themselves.

Jere Lantz was also a gifted composer and arranger, and on several occasions wrote and arranged sections of music when no other music in the world would suit the program he was creating for his audiences. He took particular joy in inserting something lively or lighthearted along with serious pieces of repertoire, particularly during the holidays. Rochester Symphony’s annual YuleFest, holiday concert, and later, Sounds of the Season, became a tradition for many families in the region as Maestro Lantz mixed emotionally stirring classic pieces with the pure fun of popular holiday tunes, resulting in a festive and energetic holiday tradition that sold out year to year.

Jere’s Lantz’s final concert with Rochester Symphony took place on December 11, 2022. The program, aptly titled A Festive Farewell, featured Lantz’s own holiday arrangements that he created just for Rochester Symphony throughout his career.

In June of 2023, Jere Lantz was honored at a farewell gala where he was named Rochester Symphony Music Director Emeritus and the Jere Lantz Legacy Fund was created in his honor. The fund is held at Rochester Area Foundation, and will support young musicians and bring guest artists to the Rochester Symphony stage.

In the 2023/24 season, the performance of Avery Gagliano is made possible through the Jere Lantz Legacy fund:

Avery Gagliano, piano | NOV 11, 2023

To contribute to the Jere Lantz Legacy fund that will support musicians early in their careers, visit the Rochester Area Foundation Donor Designated Fund website at the link below. Both Rochester Symphony and Jere Lantz will be notified when gifts are received. For more information call Rochester Symphony at 507-286-8742.
Thank you.