The Music Director/Conductor
Stephen M. Heyde is the Mary Franks Thompson Professor of Orchestral Studies and Conductor-in-Residence at Baylor University and the Conductor/Music Director of the Waco Symphony Orchestra. Prior to moving to Texas, Mr. Heyde was a member of the violin faculty at West Virginia University from 1975-1984.
Mr. Heyde has conducted All State Orchestras and other festival orchestras in 29 states and guest conducted at a number of Universities including Yale University, Ithaca College and the University of Oregon. He has conducted ballet performances with the Indianapolis, Fort Worth, Tulsa, Austin, and Oakland companies, and a number of collegiate opera productions.
Stephen Heyde made his European debut with the Krakow State Philharmonic in March 1998. In October, 2004, he was invited to conduct the orchestra of the prestigious Liszt Academy in Budapest, Hungary. During his stay in Budapest, he was awarded the prestigious “Memorial Ring of the Liszt Ferenc Music Academy” and also accepted a position on the Curatorium (Board of Supervisors) for the Academy. In April, 2007, Maestro Heyde was privileged to return to Belgium as a member of the ensemble jury for the 55th European Music Festival for Young People held in Neerpelt, serving again in April 2011 for the 57th edition of the Festival. In March, 2009, he participated in the American Arts Festival in Flanders, conducting three Belgium orchestras.
Under Mr. Heyde’s direction, the Baylor Symphony has been selected to perform at the Texas Music Educators Clinic/Convention seven times and was again invited to appear in February of 2014. In December of 2003, the Baylor Symphony was featured with other School of Music ensembles in a PBS Special, “Christmas at Baylor” that was aired nationally in over 350 markets with an estimated audience in excess of six million viewers. Under Mr. Heyde’s direction, the Baylor Symphony has also appeared by invitation at the prestigious Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina and at a national convention of the American String Teachers Association. The Baylor Symphony was privileged to accompany the last public performance of revered violinist Joseph Gingold and has also worked with a number of distinguished American performers including among others Robert Shaw, Corey Cerovsek, Jacob Druckman and Lorin Hollander. Mr. Heyde led the Symphony in a concert tour of Costa Rica in March, 2004 and led the Baylor Chamber Orchestra in a concert tour of Flanders in November of 2010. The Baylor Symphony was selected through a blind audition process to be one of two collegiate orchestras to perform at the College Orchestra Directors Association National Conference in January of 2014.
A recipient of Outstanding Teacher Awards at West Virginia University and Baylor University, Mr. Heyde is a member of Pi Kappa Lambda, Mu Omicron and Texas Orchestra Directors Association, in addition to other professional associations.