Edwin Outwater

Edwin Outwater is Music Director of Ontario’s Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony (KWS) and Director of Summer Concerts at the San Francisco Symphony. In the 2014-15 season, his eighth as Music Director of the KWS, Mr. Outwater leads the orchestra in a diverse array of programs, including “The Mozart Phenomenon”; a collaboration with Time for Three; a program focusing on Stravinsky and another of works inspired by Shakespeare; music and comedy from composers including Rossini and PDQ Bach; and works by contemporary Canadian composers. He also continues the orchestra’s groundbreaking “Intersections” series of cross-cultural and interdisciplinary collaborations. In 2011 Mr. Outwater directed the KWS on its first commercial CD release in more than a decade, From Here On Out, which features the music of Nico Muhly, Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood, and Arcade Fire’s Richard Reed Parry, on the Analekta label. 

This summer, in his inaugural season as Director of Summer Concerts at the San Francisco Symphony, Mr. Outwater directed a program with jazz-inflected works by Bernstein, Gershwin, and Ravel, featuring pianist Makoto Ozone; an all-Beethoven concert; and a collaboration with Broadway star Cheyenne Jackson, among others. Mr. Outwater’s work with the Symphony continues this season when he conducts the New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball and family concerts. A regular guest conductor of the Chicago and New World symphonies, Mr. Outwater makes appearances this season with the Milwaukee Symphony and BBC National Orchestra of Wales. In previous seasons, Mr. Outwater’s North American engagements have included performances with the New York and Los Angeles philharmonics, the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Canada, as well as the orchestras of Baltimore, Houston, Detroit, Seattle, Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, and Victoria. Further afield, he has led the Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra, New Zealand Symphony, Adelaide Symphony, Malmö Symphony, North West German Philharmonic, Mexico City Philharmonic, Orquesta Sinfónica de Xalapa, and the Hong Kong Sinfonietta.

A native of Santa Monica, California, Mr. Outwater attended Harvard University, graduating cum laude in 1993 with a degree in English literature; he received his master’s degree in conducting from UC Santa Barbara. Mr. Outwater served as Resident Conductor of the San Francisco Symphony from 2001 to 2006 and from 2001 to 2005 he was Wattis Foundation Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra.

(September 2014)