Noted in The New York Times as part of 'a new wave of female conductors in their late 20s through early 40s', Sarah Hicks' versatile and vibrant musicianship has secured her place in 'the next generation of up-and-coming American conductors'.
Since October 2009 she has been Principal Conductor of Orchestra Live with Minnesota Orchestra; she has been instrumental in creating new Pops productions while also heading the innovative classical series, Inside the Classics. Throughout her career she has collaborated with diverse artists, from Jamie Laredo and Hilary Hahn to Josh Groban and Smokey Robinson, and during the summer of 2011 she was on a two-month tour with Sting as conductor of
the final leg of his Symphonicities Tour.
Sarah Hicks has guest conducted extensively both in the States and abroad; including Boston Pops, Cincinnati Pops, Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicago Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, Detroit Symphony, National Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Tokyo Philharmonic, Nagoya Philharmonic, Osaka Philharmonic, Malaysian Philharmonic and Prime Philharmonic (Seoul, Korea). She led Los Angeles Philharmonic in July 4th concerts at the Hollywood Bowl in 2012, 2013 and 2015. 2015-16 highlights include debuts with St. Louis, San Diego and Edmonton Symphonies as well as return engagements with symphonies of San Francisco and Alabama.
Sarah Hicks' past affiliations include positions with North Carolina Symphony, Richmond Symphony and Florida Philharmonic. She was on faculty of Curtis Institute of Music from 2000 to 2005 and continues her affiliation as Staff Conductor. Her opera appearances have included Verdi's Aïda with East Slovak State Opera Theater, Poulenc's Dialogues des Carmelites and Handel's Alcina with Curtis Opera Studio and a semi-staged production of Humperdinck's Hänsel und Gretel with Minnesota Orchestra 2009.
A committed proponent of the performance of new music, Sarah Hicks conceived and completed a Microcommission Project, the first of its kind, with Minnesota Orchestra in which hundreds of people made microdonations to fund a major new work by composer Judd Greenstein. Her recording project with Vermont Symphony, Triple Doubles, featuring music of Richard Danielpour and David Ludwig with Jaime Laredo and Sharon Robinson soloists was recently released on the Bridge Label. She has also conducted performances with Composers in Shape of a Pear (Cleveland) and Aspen Contemporary Ensemble.
Sarah Hicks was born in Tokyo, Japan and raised in Honolulu, HI. Trained on both the piano and the viola, she was a prizewinning pianist by her early teens. She received her BA magna cum laude from Harvard University in composition. She holds an Artists' Degree in conducting from Curtis Institute of Music, where she studied with the late renowned pedagogue Otto-Werner Mueller. In her spare time, Sarah Hicks enjoys running, yoga, her Papillon, cooking (and eating) with her husband, traveling and sketching.