Praised by the Cincinnati Enquirer as “a leader of exceptional musical gifts, who has a clear technique on the podium and an impressive rapport with audiences,” Maestro Kelly Kuo brings a dynamic versatility and nuance to a diverse repertoire, which includes nearly 100 operas and an expansive symphonic repertoire as well. Currently Artistic Director and Conductor of Oregon Mozart Players and Associate Artistic Director of American Lyric Theater, his recent engagements have included productions with Lyric Opera of Chicago, Seattle Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Indianapolis Opera, Opera Orlando, and the Janiec Opera Company of the Brevard Music Center, and concerts with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, Sunriver Music Festival, Reno Chamber Orchestra, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, and Ballet Fantastique.
In 2008, Maestro Kuo became the first conductor of Asian descent to lead a performance at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, making his company debut with Porgy and Bess. He has since returned to lead the Chicago premiere of Charlie Parker’s Yardbird and performances featuring artists of the Ryan Opera Center. Upcoming engagements include a return to Opera Columbus, his debut with the Olympia Symphony Orchestra, and leading workshops for American Lyric Theater.
An Oregon native and recipient of a Solti Foundation U.S. Career Assistant Award for young conductors, Kuo continues to concertize as a keyboardist as the only pianist to have studied with two pupils of the Russian virtuoso Vladimir Horowitz.