"One of those very special artists who has been given a wonderful mind coupled with an organic, kinesthetic musical understanding..."
Ms. Smithorn recently created The Listening Lab, an orchestral concert series that teaches young audiences listening skills based in mindfulness techniques and research in music cognition. Described as "interesting and ingenious," that program received full support from the Peabody Dean's Incentive Award and was selected for the Johns Hopkins Social Innovation Cohort. As Education Conductor of the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, she is bringing The Listening Lab to schools throughout the Baltimore area.
Drawn to bold musical visions, Ms. Smithorn recently worked with composer Pauline Oliveros and artist Anthony Martin to reconstruct their Light Piece for David Tudor and played the work for the first time since its premiere in 1969. Inspired by this experience, she founded Ensemble 4-33, a group dedicated to experimental and avant-garde works from mid-century to the present.
Ms. Smithorn has recently been selected as a finalist for the New World Symphony's Conducting Fellowship, the Chautauqua Institute's David Effron Conducting Fellowship, the Royal Northern College of Music's Junior Fellowship in Conducting, and she was nominated for the Conductor's Guild Thelma A. Robinson Award, a biennial award for promising young conductors. She was the founder and conductor of Ad Hoc, an award-winning chamber ensemble which was nominated as a "Maverick Classical Music Ensemble" on ArtsJournal's Sandow. She has received career development awards from the Rislov Foundation in Ann Arbor, the Arts and Cultural Council of Greater Rochester, and the Anna Sosenko Assist Trust in New York City.
As a pianist, Ms. Smithorn has given solo, chamber, and lecture performances at the Steinway Recital Hall of St. Louis, the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, the Diastole Scholars Center, the Brevard Music Festival, and the Eastman School of Music, among others. She currently teaches at the Peaslee Neighborhood Center, which provides low-cost lessons for students in underserved communities, and she has served as a teaching artist with MyCincinnati and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s OrchKids, two El-Sistema-inspired music education programs.
Ms. Smithorn completed graduate studies in orchestral conducting at the Peabody Conservatory, where she studied with Marin Alsop and Markand Thakar.