Jeffrey Rink, Conductor
Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra
“...Rink conducts a World-Class Concert Otello...” said the Boston Globe, “Boston’s pre-eminent Verdi conductor” said the Boston Phoenix, “...Rink affirmed that he is a conductor who understands and faithfully the observes the intentions of the composer, musically elegant, precise and efficient without excessive movement...” said Switzerland’s La Liberté, and Mexico City’s El Economista called him “...among the best of his generation of conductors...”.
Recipent of the 2005 Jacopo Peri Award for outstanding contributions to the art of Opera, Mr. Rink was appointed in 2007 as the Mattie Kelly Distinguished Chair in Orchestral Music at Northwest Florida State College and Music Director of the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra. As guest conductor of the Maryland Opera Theatre he led a production of La Bohème with which was praised by the Washington Post as “good as any "Bohème" you are likely to see this side of the Metropolitan Opera or Covent Garden.” In 2001 Mr. Rink made his conducting debuts with The New Japan Philharmonic and the Philharmonic of Tokyo and in 2002 conducted a sold out performance of Chinese and Western music in Carnegie Hall. In 2007 Mr. Rink concluded his eighteen-year tenure as Music Director of the Chorus pro Musica and thirteen-year tenure as Music Director of the Newton Symphony Orchestra. While in Boston he was also Director of Orchestral Activities at the Longy School and led Concert Opera Boston for fourteen seasons. Mr. Rink’s tenure with Chorus pro Musica was marked by numerous significant contributions to opera in concert version, including performances of Carmen, Faust, Samson et Dalila, Cavalleria Rusticana, Pagliacci, Turandot, Otello, Macbeth, Nabucco, La Traviata, Mefistofele and the Boston premiere of Verdi’s Attila. . During Mr. Rink’s eight year directorship of the New England Philharmonic the orchestra was nationally recognized in three of eight seasons by ASCAP for its adventuresome programming and commitment to new music, having played over twenty premieres.
In 1986 he was appointed by Christopher Hogwood as Assistant Conductor of the Handel and Haydn Society, a position that he held until the summer of 1990. He has received high praise from the Boston Globe, the Washington Post, New Yorker Magazine, the London Musical Times, Poland’s Glos Wybrzeza, El Economista in Mexico City, the Manila Standard and La Liberté in Switzerland.
In November of 2000 Mr. Rink led a highly successful performance of Bach’s St. John Passion with the Ensemble of Tokyo and in March of 2002 conducted acclaimed performances of The Magic Flute at the New National Theatre, Tokyo. Since the fall of 2002 Mr. Rink has twice led programs with both the Carlos Chavez Symphony and Chamber Orchestra of the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. With Chorus pro Musica he has conducted the North American premieres of Berlioz’s L’Enfance du Christ and Roméo et Juliette with period instruments. In September 2006 Mr. Rink conducted the Tokyo Philharmonic in an all-Berlioz program featuring the recently-discovered Messe Solonnelle and in the 2003 and 2004 seasons he served as a cover conductor for the Boston Symphony Orchestra assisting James Levine, James Conlon, Hans Graf, Robert Spano, Rafael Frübeck de Burgos, Sir Colin Davis and Gennady Rozhdestvensky.
Since 2009 Mr. Rink's performances included appearances with the Chamber Orchestra of the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City, a performance of Bach’s Mass in B minor in Tokyo’s Suntory Hall a concert with the Charleston (SC) Symphony as well as performances with the Teatro Lirico d’Europa’s productions of Rigoletto and Turandot. His recent performance of Mahler's Symphony No. 4 was described by Alejandro Fernández in Mexico's El Norte as "miraculously balanced."
He was a featured guest artist as the conductor of performances of La Traviata in Mexico's San Pedro Festival as well a performance of Mahler Symphony No.2 in Tokyo in March 2011 as a response to the earthquake and tsunami.
In addition to his work with the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra in the 2014-15 season Mr. Rink returned to Japan twice for performances of Bruckner’s Symphony No. 8 as well as Karl Jenkins Mass for Peace.