Newsletter

Stay up to date with the latest from MAKERS delivered straight to your inbox. Sign up for new stories from trailblazing women, a big dose of inspiration, and exclusive MAKERS content.

Newsletter Confirmation

Thank you for joining! Please check your inbox for our special welcome letter
with exclusive updates from MAKERS.

MAKERS Moment

Choosing a Path

Choosing a Path

More From Marin

In this video

Tagged as

Alsop talks about her decision to join the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the importance of following your instinct.

Marin's Biography

Cause of Choice: Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s OrchKids; Taki Concordia Conducting Fellowship

First piece of music that inspired her: “String Sextet in b flat”, by Johannes Brahms. “It taught me that music could move you and could change your life.”

First paying job: Playing music outside of St. Patrick’s Chapel in Manhattan.

Best advice ever received: Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Always have a plan B.
 

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s Marin Alsop is a lot more than just the first female conductor of a major American orchestra. Alsop is also the Chief Conductor of the Sao Paulo Symphony Orchestra, Conductor Emeritus of the Bournemouth Symphony, Conductor Laureate of the Colorado Symphony and Music Director of the Cabrillo Festival. She was the first artist to win Gramophone’s “Artist of the Year” award and the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Conductor Award in one season, not to mention that she won the Classical Brit Award for Best Female Artist that same year.
 
Raised in New York, Alsop found her love of music at an early age. With a mother who supported her dream of being a conductor despite the fact that women didn’t do that, Alsop attended Yale University and later received a Master’s Degree from The Juilliard School. And after she took a risk by becoming the first woman conductor at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Alsop knew there was no turning back. Despite some resistance in the beginning, Alsop thrived at Baltimore, and in 2009, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra extended her tenure through 2015.
 
Now, Alsop has been the first conductor named to the MacArthur Fellowship and is a guest conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra and New York Philharmonic. Alsop also takes her talents overseas, where she conducts the London Symphony and London Philharmonic as well as other orchestras all over the world.

Related Videos

Eleanor Holmes Norton
Eleanor Holmes Norton
U.S. Congresswoman, District of Columbia

Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, now in her twelfth term as the Congresswoman for the District of Columbia, knew from a young age she wanted to make change to end the severe se...

Ruth Simmons
Ruth Simmons
First African-American Ivy League President

In 2001, Ruth Simmons made history when she became the first African-American president of an Ivy League university, as well as Brown University’s first female president. Pri...

Andrea Jung
Andrea Jung
First Female CEO of AVON

A letter from Andrea Jung’s father sits on her desk at Avon, where she served as the cosmetic giant’s first female and longest-serving CEO. “Cultivate the absence...

Courtney E. Martin
Courtney E. Martin
Author

Courtney E. Martin’s first book, Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters: How the Quest for Perfection is Harming Young Women was called “smart and spirited” by the New...