American conductor, Andrew Lee Neer (b. 1982), was born in Tucker, Georgia and has lived in Michigan most of his life, where he currently resides with his wife, Mary Lynn. He is quickly becoming known for his dynamic and expressive conducting style. Mr. Neer is honored to serve as the Artistic Director / Conductor of Oakland Choral Society (Auburn Hills MI), Music Director / Conductor of Orchestra Sono (Bloomfield Hills MI) and Music Director / Conductor of Redford Symphony Orchestra (Redford MI). He is constantly working to expand awareness of classical music and the positive impact orchestral and choral music have on society.
Mr. Neer’s undergraduate work consisted of studies in Composition, Trumpet and Music Theatre Performance at Central Michigan University (CMU). In his time at CMU, he had the privilege of working with Dr. Eric Hoy Tucker (voice), Dr. Timothy Caldwell (voice), and Dr. Dennis Horton (trumpet). Though his main focus was on performance and singing, his true passion was composition. In addition to his private instrument instructors, Mr. Neer was honored to work with composers Scott R. Harding, Jose-Luis Maurtua and David R. Gillingham.
Andrew often sees things on a grand scale and that shone through in his first compositional undertaking writing a spectacle in honor of those lost in the United States Civil War The Battle Grounds for Symphonic Wind Ensemble. This project led to cross-departmental projects as he composed original underscores for several theatrical productions including Moliere’s Tartuffe and collaborations on a short ballet A Mother’s Love. He was honored to write music for critically acclaimed performers Dr. Eric Hoy Tucker (Southern Salute) and Dr. Alexandra Mascolo-David. In addition, he has composed music for several short films that have toured independent film competitions.
Shortly following graduation from CMU, Mr. Neer began coursework for a Master of Music (MM) in Composition/Theory at Wayne State University in Detroit MI. While attending Wayne, he had the pleasure of working under the composition instruction of Dr. James Hartway. In his work with Dr. Hartway, he refined his technique and built upon his “American” sound mixing atonality, serialism, and tonal music. He composed several works for voice, including the song cycle The Village as well as works for chamber and symphonic orchestra. While writing his thesis work for orchestra, Remember Us, he fostered a new found passion for conducting. Upon completion of his Composition degree, he immediately began pursuit of a second MM in Conducting. In his second MM, Mr. Neer studied conducting with Douglas Bianchi (wind ensemble) and Norah Duncan IV (choral).
In late 2015, Mr. Neer began private study with orchestral conductor and mentor Kenneth Kiesler, and has since been honored to assist him in Europe and projects in the U.S. He has lead orchestra at home in the United States and Europe. In 2016, he began an international conducting career, appearing with orchestras in Romania and Bulgaria. Later that year, he won the post of Music Director at Redford Civic Symphony Orchestra where he quickly expanded the size of the orchestra to allow them to perform works and programs at a level not yet attained.
He continues to work diligently to expand his experience and inspiration. Believing that music is the cornerstone in building community, he assembled a 60 member professional orchestra in Metro-Detroit MI to raise funds for the Hurricane Relief Fund in fall of 2017, raising just over $14,500 for the cause. This performance led to his appointment as Music Director of the Birmingham Bloomfield Symphony Orchestra (MI), now Orchestra Sono. In 2018, he was awarded the position of Artistic Director / Conductor of Oakland Choral Society, a semi-professional orchestral chorus in Auburn Hills MI. He is greatly honored to lead these fine organizations.
Fall of 2020 marked the next chapter for Mr. Neer as he began studies at the world renown University of Michigan to earn a Doctorate of Musical Arts in Orchestral Conducting. He has been honored to premiere works by up and coming composers, and conduct Campus Orchestras as navigated COVID-19. In his spare time, he cherishes spending time and cooking for/with his wife, Mary Lynn, and their dogs.
Mr. Neer holds Master of Music degrees in Composition and Conducting from Wayne State University, Detroit MI. He is an active member of ASCAP, The Conductors Guild, League of American Orchestras, College Orchestra Directors Association (CODA), The Society of Composers International, and alumni to Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. He aspires to create new music and opportunities to share music with anyone who may not normally experience orchestral and opera repertoire. He is ever thankful to his wife and parents for their constant support!
For information on upcoming performances, please visit the “events” section of this website!