Colburn School and San Francisco Symphony Announce Two New Salonen Conducting Fellows

Elias Peter Brown and Aleksandra Melaniuk join San Francisco Symphony conducting staff in the 2023–24 season as an extension of their work as Salonen Fellows in the Colburn School Conservatory of Music’s Negaunee Conducting Program

Conductors Elias Peter Brown and Aleksandra Melaniuk have been selected by Esa-Pekka Salonen to join the San Francisco Symphony conducting staff in the 2023–24 season as an extension of their work as Salonen Fellows in the Colburn School Conservatory of Music’s Negaunee Conducting Program. Brown was assistant conductor for the San Francisco Symphony’s Opening Night Gala and All San Francisco concerts in September, and Melaniuk will begin her work with the Orchestra in January.

Esa-Pekka Salonen joined the Colburn School faculty in 2018 to lead and develop the Negaunee Conducting Program, a course of study in the school’s Conservatory of Music for a small, select group of young conductors. The Salonen Fellows develop their craft and nurture their talent through personal mentorship from Salonen, gaining significant real-world podium experience on and off campus to prepare them for professional careers. As part of their fellowship roles, they will serve as an assistant conductor to Salonen for several of his programs with the San Francisco Symphony during the 2023–24 season.

In addition to their work with the SF Symphony, throughout the program, the Fellows will study with Salonen at the Colburn School and serve as preparatory conductors for the flagship Colburn Orchestra. In his role as faculty at Colburn, Salonen will conduct the Colburn Orchestra at The Soroya on November, 4, 2023, as part of its annual performance series. The program includes Elizabeth Ogonek’s Moondog and is part of the California Festival: A Celebration of New Music. Other works on the program include Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No. 1 with soloist Benett Tsai, and Brahms’ Symphony No. 4.

Elias Peter Brown and Aleksandra Melaniuk also join the roster of Colburn Artists, a unique in-house management program for Colburn students on the cusp of professional careers. Created in order to provide guidance and support during the critical transition from the conservatory environment to a performance career, the Colburn Artists program is designed to prepare students to work with industry leaders and artist managers. In a supportive atmosphere linked closely with their individual performance studies, they receive personalized career advice and training, including guidance on building relationships with presenters, orchestras, and world-class musicians; developing repertoire; interview preparation; and creating a polished image and online presence.

Former Salonen Fellows include Kyle Dickson, who was appointed Assistant Conductor of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra and Conductor of the Memphis Symphony Youth Orchestra; Ross Jamie Collins, who was appointed Conductor-in-Residence of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, is currently a Dudamel Fellow with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and signed to the roster of HarrisonParrott management; and Molly Turner, who was named Conducting Fellow of the New World Symphony.

The Colburn School conducting program is made possible by The Negaunee Foundation, created in 1987 to celebrate and support the arts and cultural institutions.

Learn more about the Colburn School Conservatory of Music’s Negaunee Conducting Program.

About Elias Peter Brown

Elias Peter Brown works as a conductor, composer, improviser, and curator, seeking to create meaningful spaces for listening in and out of the concert hall. This season, he serves as a Salonen Fellow in the Negaunee Conducting Program at Colburn Conservatory and the San Francisco Symphony, where he will assist Esa-Pekka Salonen internationally, including engagements with Orchestre de Paris, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Colburn Orchestra, and Ensemble Intercontemporain. He leads members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic in Stravinsky’s L’Histoire du soldat and conducts a concert of contemporary works with the Zafraan and New Babylon Ensembles on tour, outreach concerts with the Zipper Orchestra, and a performance of concertos with the Colburn Orchestra.

Brown was previously assistant conductor of the Korean National Symphony Orchestra in Seoul during the 2022–23 season, a role he assumed after winning First Prize and the Orchestra Prize at the Korean International Conducting Competition in 2021. Additionally, he has worked with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Flemish Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin, Kammerakademie Potsdam, Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo, Kammerorchester Basel, Magdeburgische Philharmonie, Neubrandenburger Philharmonie, Thüringen Symphony, Brandenburg State Orchestra, Gyeonggi Philharmonic, North Czech Philharmonic, and the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra. His deep love for new music has brought forth collaborations with ensembles and collectives across Europe, including Ensemble MusikFabrik, Ensemble Zafraan, New Babylon Ensemble, Spectra Ensemble, and Divertimento Ensemble, and he recently served as assistant conductor at the Acht Brücken Festival with the European Workshop for Contemporary Music.

Also a dedicated educator, Brown previously served as a teaching artist with the London Philharmonic, and he recently worked as a guest conductor with the Orchestra of the Royal Conservatory of Ghent. He has led workshops in creative and attentive listening at Berlin’s Floating University and in artist residencies in France, Japan, and in the Republic of Georgia. Beyond his role as conductor, he has been mentored as a music curator through the Sounds Now program at Onassis Stegi, and his work as composer has been performed at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, Krama Festival in Athens, and the Contemporary Art Centre in Vilnius, Lithuania.

Based in Los Angeles and Berlin, Brown graduated with honors from Yale University and the Royal Academy of Music, where he studied with Sian Edwards. He also completed a Professional Diploma in Orchestral Conducting at University of the Arts, Berlin. He has participated in masterclasses with David Zinman, Johannes Schlaefli, Kristiina Poska, Mark Stringer, Marin Alsop, Robert Treviño, and Larry Rachleff, and he was chosen as a participant for The Critical Orchestra at the Hanns Eisler School of Music in 2022. Brown is currently a scholarship holder of the Conducting Forum of the German Music Council and was the recipient of a 2023 Solti Foundation US Career Assistance Award.

He is represented by Colburn Artists.

About Aleksandra Melaniuk

Polish conductor Aleksandra Melaniuk has worked with the London Symphony Orchestra as a semi-finalist of the 17th Donatella Flick Conducting Competition, and is one of the winners of the 2023 Das Kritische Orchester, led by Forum Dirigieren. Raised in Warsaw and Edinburgh, Melaniuk is currently a Britten-Pears Young Artist (BPYA) for the 2023–24 season and a Salonen Fellow in the Negaunee Conducting Program at Colburn Conservatory and the San Francisco Symphony, where she will assist Esa-Pekka Salonen internationally.

Melaniuk has already conducted numerous orchestras in Europe, including the Flanders Symphony Orchestra, Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, Baltic Sea Philharmonic, Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra, Moravská Filharmonie Olomouc, Lower Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Orchestra of the Grand Theatre in Poznan. She made her professional debut with the Silesian Philharmonic in their ‘For the Young’ concert series. In 2023, she will work on Oliver Leith’s Last Days with Sian Edwards, a collaboration between the BPYA Program and the Jette Parker Artists Program at the Royal Opera House.

Melaniuk has reached the final rounds in auditions for the Leverhulme Conducting Fellowship with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra & Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Constant Lambert Fellowship/Jette Parker Ballet Conductor with Royal Opera House, and the Female Conductor Traineeship at Opera North. This season, she participates in the Fiskars Summer Festival & Conducting Academy, led by Esa-Pekka Salonen, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Dalia Stasevska, and James Gaffigan. In 2022, she participated in the Järvi Conducting Academy in Estonia, took part in the 10th edition of Dirigentuka in Stavanger, Norway, and was chosen as one of the three students in the SOV Masterclass for young talents, led by Kristiina Poska, in cooperation with Flanders Symphony Orchestra, Spectra Ensemble, and Forum Dirigieren.

In 2021, Melaniuk established her own orchestra and conducted several programs promoting British music in Poland. She was invited to conduct the premiere of several contemporary works through the SubRosa Project, which were recorded during sessions in Enigma Centre in Poznan. Having a deep interest in opera, she has participated in preparations for Puccini’s La Rondine with Silesian Opera and Szymanowski’s King Roger at the Baltic Opera. This season she will be an assistant conductor for Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito at the Baltic Opera.

Committed to education, Melaniuk has participated in numerous conducting masterclasses with Johannes Schlaefli, Nicolas Pasquet, Claire Gibault, Johannes Wildner, Sebastian Lang-Lessing, Leonid Grin, Alexander Polianichko, Antoni Wit, and Jerzy Maksymiuk. She took part in the Music.Media.Management. project hosted by the Szczecin Philharmonic and Cadenza Fjord Festival, where she completed a course in team management. Melaniuk has a master’s degree in conducting from the Krzysztof Penderecki Academy of Music in Krakow.

She is currently represented by Colburn Artists.

About the Colburn School

A performing arts institution located in the heart of Los Angeles, the Colburn School trains students from beginners to those about to embark on professional careers. The academic units of the School provide a complete spectrum of music and dance education united by a single philosophy: that all who desire to study music or dance should have access to top-level instruction.

  • The diploma- and degree-granting Conservatory of Music is distinguished by a unique all-scholarship model, renowned faculty, and outstanding performance opportunities. It prepares the very highest level of collegiate musicians for professional careers.
  • The Music Academy is a highly selective training program for gifted young pre-collegiate musicians, designed to prepare students for conservatory study and performing careers at the highest levels of achievement. This program offers residential options and balances performance, musical instruction, and academics.
  • The Community School of Performing Arts welcomes students of all ages, from seven months old to adults. It offers over 120 classes each year in orchestral instruments, piano, guitar, voice, jazz, music theory, drama, and ensembles including orchestra, choir, and chamber music.
  • The Trudl Zipper Dance Institute develops performers of all levels, from aspiring professionals in the Dance Academy to beginners starting in Youth Dance. Students of all levels receive training in ballet, tap, musical theater, and modern genres as part of a comprehensive dance education.
  • Created to serve all units of the School, the Center for Innovation and Community Impact empowers the musical and dance leaders of tomorrow by nurturing students’ passion and ability to serve their communities, preparing them for sustainable careers, and embracing the development of new ideas. The Center embodies Colburn’s commitment to developing young artists with the curiosity, skills, and commitment to make a difference in their field.

Each year, more than 2,000 students from around the world come to Colburn to benefit from the renowned faculty, exceptional facilities, and focus on excellence that unites the community.

The Colburn Center, designed by Frank Gehry, is a multi-faceted campus expansion of the Colburn School expected to open in 2026. Located across the street from the School’s existing campus at the intersection of Olive and Second Streets, the Colburn Center will enable the School to expand its mission of presenting programs for the public. Gehry’s design includes Terri and Jerry Kohl Hall, a 1,000-seat in-the-round concert hall, four professional-sized dance studios, a 100-seat flexible studio theater, and gardens that bring fresh air and green spaces to the downtown landscape.

Learn more at

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About the San Francisco SymphonyThe San Francisco Symphony is among the most adventurous and innovative arts institutions in the United States, celebrated for its artistic excellence, creative performance concepts, active touring, award-winning recordings, and standard-setting education programs. In the 2020–21 season, the San Francisco Symphony welcomed conductor and composer Esa-Pekka Salonen as its 12th Music Director, embarking on a new vision for the present and future of the orchestral landscape. In their inaugural season together, Salonen and the San Francisco Symphony introduced a groundbreaking artistic leadership model anchored by eight Collaborative Partners from a variety of cultural disciplines: Nicholas Britell, Julia Bullock, Claire Chase, Bryce Dessner, Pekka Kuusisto, Nico Muhly, Carol Reiley, and esperanza spalding. This group of visionary artists, thinkers, and doers, along with Salonen and the San Francisco Symphony, have set out to explore and develop new ideas inspired by the Collaborative Partners’ unique areas of expertise, including innovative digital projects, expansive and imaginative performance concepts in a variety of concert formats, commissions of new music, and projects that foster collaboration across artistic and administrative areas. Shaped by the dynamic partnership and shared vision of Salonen, the Collaborative Partners, and the Orchestra and Chorus, the San Francisco Symphony’s 2023–24 season reflects a spirit of collaboration, experimentation, and renewed dialogue through live music.

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The San Francisco Symphony receives support from more than 9,500 individual donors and 160 partner institutions.

San Francisco Arts Commission is Lead Municipal Partner of the San Francisco Symphony.

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