Conductor. Teacher. Musician.
With adventurous musicality and an infectious stage presence, Dr. Ian Passmore leads a rich career as conductor and educator. Praised by Fanfare Magazine as “a rising young conductor” whose work “just glows,” his performances are recognized for their distinctive, often daring interpretations.
Following two seasons as the Omaha Symphony’s Assistant Conductor, the orchestra named him their Associate Conductor in 2019, a position never before created in its nearly 100 year history. Passmore otherwise maintains an active guest conducting schedule: his previous engagements include a residency at the Vietnam National Academy of Music in Hanoi, where he worked with the conservatory’s musicians and led the Hanoi Philharmonic in concert, premiering Vĩnh Cát’s “An everlasting moment at the change of the millennium” in tandem with performances of Ives and Dvořák. In the 2015-16 season, he was honored as the Schmidt Conducting Fellow with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.
Having begun his own conducting studies at the age of ten, Dr. Passmore’s career also emphasizes conducting pedagogy and music education at large. Prior to his appointment in Omaha, he worked with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra’s high school Side-by-Side program, and served as Associate Instructor of Orchestral Conducting at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where he taught all levels of conducting and led many of the IU orchestras, often preparing them for guest artists such as Franz Welser-Möst and Joshua Bell. Dr. Passmore maintains an active private teaching schedule, and his students have gone on to attend conservatories and summer festivals such as the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, the Conservatoire de musique de Lyon, and the Aspen Music Festival & School.
Passmore holds a Doctor of Music degree from Indiana University, writing a dissertation entitled “The Pedagogical Philosophies & Techniques of David Effron.” Additional education includes a Master of Music degree from the University of Delaware and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, with further studies at the University of North Carolina. He is grateful to his conducting mentors, who include David Effron, Arthur Fagen, James Allen Anderson, Tonu Kalam, and the late Robert Gutter.
Dr. Ian Passmore is a member of the League of American Orchestras, Conductors Guild, and the honors music society Pi Kappa Lambda. In 2019, he was elected to the Conductors Guild Board of Directors. He is now based in Omaha with his fiancée, the conductor Dianna Fiore, and two miniature long-haired dachshunds: Beethoven and Charlie.
Ian Passmore in Performance
Kurt Atterberg, Symphony No. 6 in C major, Op. 31 (1927-28)
"This performance glows. Ian Passmore has a natural, fluid sense of the music. That's hard to define in a conductor, but worth its weight in gold when one encounters it." - Steven Kruger, Fanfare Magazine critic and former conducting artist manager at Shaw Concerts (NYC)