After attending university, Nolan Dresden performed professionally for six years in musical theater and opera, and a few seasons as Music Director of a theater company outside of Chicago. At this point, he had come to a fork in the road with either pursuing a conducting career or a performance career. Feeling that he had more to offer as a conductor and feeling more artistic fulfillment in that field, the choice was clear.
In 2009, he started to make my way up the instrumental conducting ladder here in New York City. From his resume, he has had a fantastic amount of opportunity to build a creative and eclectic repertoire list. He has hit all the various marks, from standard orchestral works like Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 4 to lesser known pieces like Two Cine Pastrali by Toru Takemitsu.
Nolan prides himself in programming outside of the box, in order to create an experience for the audience to venture through with the ensemble. He feels that every concert experience should allow the audience to feel and not think. Having always struggled with the term “tone poem”, he feels like all music should set a scene, or create an environment around us that transports us to another place. A place without cell phones, without stress—and without the MTA. By using his background of performing and score study, he can offer a unique mix of artistic integrity, technical know-how, and storytelling.
If you look throughout history, in every culture, the one thing that will always bring people together are stories. Well, and food, but that’s a different story. Sitting down and trading stories and swapping tales is part of humanity. It’s who we are. It’s our journeys through life that molds us. It marks us, and often in ways we don’t realize. I want to make it my goal to use music to pull those experiences to the surface so that we can share in them together.