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Dr. David Jacobs began his career as an orchestral musician in 2000 and for seven seasons he played regularly with the Sarasota Orchestra as well as the renowned Sarasota Music Festival Orchestra. He also was a member of the Sarasota Opera Orchestra for three years and appeared regularly with the Southwest Florida Symphony, Naples Philharmonic, and New World Symphony.

In 2007, he began training as a conductor at the Eastman School of Music. There, he was the recipient of several conducting prizes, including the prestigious Frederick Fennell Fellowship for Advanced Conducting Study and the Walter Hagen prize for excellence in conducting. Throughout his residency, he conducted performances with almost every major ensemble including the Eastman School Symphony Orchestra, Eastman Wind Ensemble, Eastman Wind Orchestra, Graduate Conducting Orchestra, New Eastman Orchestra, and Ossia, the school’s student run contemporary sinfonietta.

Currently, Dr. Jacobs is the Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of Oregon where he conducts the symphony orchestra and teaches courses in conducting. Prior to that appointment, he was the Music Director of the PBA Symphony at Palm Beach Atlantic University, where he brought that orchestra to a heightened level of notoriety throughout the South Florida classical community. Dr. Jacobs has also given performances with several other well-respected university programs, such as Duquesne University, the Cole Conservatory at CSU-Long Beach, Florida State University, and has been invited back to Eastman as a guest artist in residence for three weeks in 2015. In addition to his work with academic orchestras, Dr. Jacobs has also guest conducted performances with several professional orchestras here and abroad, including, the Oregon Music Festival Orchestra, Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, Palm Beach Symphony, and the St. Petersburg (Russia) State Symphony Orchestra.

As an academic and pedagogue, Dr. Jacobs has given presentations on conducting and interpretation at Duquesne University, the Oregon Music Educators Association, CSU-Long Beach, and the Oregon Orchestral Conducting Institute, which he founded in 2013.  The institute has grown into a highly competitive three-day intensive workshop that attracts young conductors from all over the world.  Dr. Jacobs has published articles on repertoire internationally and will be releasing an updated edition of Myaskovsky's Nineteenth Symphony with Le Chante du Monde in Paris.

Despite his relative young age, Dr. Jacobs has already been credited on three commercially available albums. He served as Assistant Conductor for “Manhattan Music,” a collaboration between the Canadian Brass and the Eastman Wind Ensemble, which was released in 2008 on the Opening Day label; Conductor for “Let Others Name You,” an eclectic fusion of contemporary orchestral music with Balinese Gamelan performed by the Ossia Chamber Orchestra on the New World Record label, released in the Fall of 2009; and music director of brass and trumpet performer on "We Proclaim," a collection of worship music released by the Ekklesia label in 2011.

Dr. Jacobs primary conducting teachers were Mark Scatterday and Neil Varon, and studied additionally with JoAnn Falletta, Gustav Meier, and Marin Alsop.

  • DMA 2011, Conducting, Eastman School of Music
  • MA 2002, Music Education, University of Central Florida
  • BMus 2000, Music Performance, Duquesne University


  • 2007 Frederick Fennell Fellowship for Advanced Conducting Study
  • 2009 Walter Hagen Prize, Excellence in Conducting
  • 2011 Bruno Walter Fellowship
  • 2011 Cabrillo Festival Conducting Workshop, outstanding participant
  • 2013 Thelma A. Robinson Award, nominee