The St. Louis Civic Orchestra is thrilled to announce the appointment of Dr. Barry Ford as its new Artistic Director. A highly esteemed conductor, musician, and music educator, he brings a wealth of experience and a deep passion for orchestral music to the renowned St. Louis Civic Orchestra.

With an impressive background in orchestral conducting, composition, trumpet performance, and a commitment to artistic excellence, he is poised to lead the St. Louis Civic Orchestra into an exciting new chapter. His knowledge of diverse musical styles, extensive experience performing and conducting, and his dedication to fostering collaboration among musicians make him an ideal fit for the orchestra and its commitment to enriching the cultural landscape of St. Louis. His extensive repertoire encompasses classical, contemporary, and symphonic works, reflecting his commitment to artistic excellence and innovation.

Born in 1964 in Châteauroux, France, Professor Barry Ford received his Bachelor of Music in Education from Northwestern University and his Master of Music from the University of Missouri.  While at Northwestern University, Ford studied trumpet with Vincent Cichowicz and Luther Didrickson. He also studied conducting, arranging, and composition with John P. Paynter, Don Owens, and Jay Kawarsky.  After teaching for several years in the public school system, Ford began studying composition and conducting at the University of Missouri with Edward Dolbashian, Dale Lonis, John Cheetham, and Thomas McKenney.  His doctoral studies were in Composition at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he studied under the guidance of Randal Snyder, Eric Richards, and Tyler White.

In 1996, at the request of the Carlos Gomes Foundation, Ford accepted a position as Professor of Trumpet at the Carlos Gomes Conservatory in Belém, Brazil.  Concurrent to this appointment, he played principal trumpet with the newly formed Orquestra Sinfônica do Theatro da Paz and Amazônia Jazz Band. Two years later, he was named music director and conductor of both groups. Ford continued in all of these positions while also later serving as the inaugural Professor of Trumpet at the State University of Pará where he remained until returning to the U.S. to begin work at the University of Nebraska – Omaha (UNO) in 2004. While at UNO, he taught a wide range of subjects including composition, music history, music theory, and world music.  In 2007, he was named Director of Orchestral Activities at UNO and directed the Heartland Philharmonic Orchestra and UNO Chamber Orchestra.  In 2017, he served as Director of Orchestral Activities at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Upon completion of his contract, he assumed the position of Interim Director of Orchestras at Truman State University for the 2021-22 academic year.