View entire season

Michael Stern


Michael Stern


Michael Stern is the Music Director of the Kansas City Symphony and the Founding Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the IRIS Orchestra.

Stern and Kansas City have been hailed for their remarkable artistic ascent, original programming, organizational and audience growth and development since his tenure began and have entered a new era in their new home Helzberg Hall at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. 

With IRIS Orchestra in Germantown, Tennessee, Stern and this orchestra are widely praised for the virtuosity of their playing; the depth and variety of programming, with a special emphasis on American contemporary music.

Past positions have included chief conductor of the Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra, Permanent Guest Conductor of the Orchestre National de Lyon, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Orchestre National de Lille.

In North America, Mr. Stern has conducted many orchestras including New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Boston, Montreal, and Toronto as well as several orchestras throughout Europe and Asia.  He received his music degree from The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and is a 1981 graduate of Harvard University, where he earned a degree in American history.