Conductors’ Institute Faculty


DR. Lois Ferrari

Institute Director

Lois Ferrari is Professor of Music at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas and has been a member of the faculty since 1993. In addition to serving as host and clinician for the SU Conductors’ Institute, Dr. Ferrari conducts the SU Orchestra and Wind Ensemble, and teaches conducting. Many of Dr. Ferrari’s students have gone on to pursue graduate degrees in conducting at prestigious institutions such as the Peabody Institute, the University of Houston, Arizona State University, and the University of Texas at Arlington.

 An active guest conductor, Maestra Ferrari recently conducted the Washington State (WMEA) All-State Concert Band in February 2016. Past highlights include directing the WMEA All-State Wind Ensemble, the Houston All-Region Concert Band, and the Austin All-City Wind Symphony.

 As Music Director of the Austin Civic Orchestra, Dr. Ferrari was named 1st Runner-Up in 2012 and Finalist in 2014 for American Prize in Community Orchestra Conducting. Judge David Katz remarked that “…she reminds me of the eminent Margaret Hillis.”  In 2010, the Maestra was also honored as the first woman to conduct an orchestral performance at the Long Center for the Performing Arts in Austin.

 An enthusiastic champion of new music, Dr. Ferrari founded the bi-annual ACO Composition Contest and is proud to have premiered more than twenty works during the course of her career. One such work was nominated by the Austin Critics Table for Best Symphonic Performance of 2009. In 2012, Ferrari and the ACO were commissioned by composer David Amram to present the Texas premiere of his Symphonic Variations on a Song by Woody Guthrie.

 A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, where she received a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Conducting, Maestra Ferrari received a full doctoral fellowship and was appointed Assistant Conductor of the renowned Eastman Wind Ensemble. She also earned a Master of Music degree in Conducting and a Bachelor of Music degree with a double major in Performance and Music Education from the Ithaca College School of Music. Her principal teachers were Donald Hunsberger, Rodney Winther, David Effron, and Pamela Gearhart.

 Originally from Long Island, NY, Lois now resides in Georgetown, TX with her husband, Dr. Paul Gaffney, and their two cats, Buddha and Gandhi.


MR. Peter Bay

Peter Bay is celebrating his 18th full season as Music Director and Conductor of the Austin Symphony Orchestra. He is also Music Director of the Hot Springs Music Festival in Arkansas, and Conductor of the Big Sky Festival Orchestra in Montana.

Maestro Bay has appeared with over seventy different orchestras including the National, Chicago, St. Louis, Houston, Dallas, and Baltimore. Peter is the primary conductor for the ASO’s performances with Ballet Austin. He made his Austin Lyric Opera debut in January 2002 with André Previn’s A Streetcar Named Desire, conducted Verdi’s La Traviata in November 2002, Puccini’s Turandot in November 2003, and Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaroin April 2005.

Other positions held by Mr. Bay have included Music Director of the Erie Philharmonic, Annapolis Symphony Orchestra, Breckenridge Music Festival (CO), Britt Festival Orchestra (OR), and four different conducting posts with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the Richmond Symphony in Virginia. Bay and the Austin Symphony Orchestra have recorded music of Edward Burlingame Hill for release in late fall 2014, and with the Richmond Symphony he recorded the US premiere performance of Britten’s The Sword in the Stone for Opus One Records. His CD, Voices, featuring the percussion ensemble NEXUS and the Rochester Philharmonic, is on the Nexus CD label.

A native of Washington, DC, Mr. Bay is a graduate of the University of Maryland and the Peabody Institute of Music. In 1994, he was one of two conductors selected to participate in the Leonard Bernstein American Conductors Program. He was also the first prize winner of the 1980 Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Young Conductors Competition and a prize winner of the 1987 Leopold Stokowski Competition sponsored by the American Symphony Orchestra in New York. In July 2012 he appeared in Solo Symphony, a choreographic work created for him by Allison Orr of Forklift Danceworks.

Peter is married to soprano Mela Sarajane Dailey and they have a son, Colin.

For further information, write or call:

Dr. Lois Ferrari
Southwestern University
PO Box 770
Georgetown, TX 78627-0770