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New Jacksonville Symphony Conductor Hopes To 'Present Different Concert Experiences'

Courtney Lewis

Courtney Lewis, the newly appointed music director and musical director of the the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, is ready to bring his talents to the First Coast.Lewis will take the baton for the 2015-2016 season. He stopped by First Coast Connect to discuss his new position with Melissa Ross.

The Belfast Ireland native will continue as music director of the Discovery Ensemble, an acclaimed chamber orchestra in Boston which he co-founded in 2008. He'll also stay on as assistant conductor with the New York Philharmonic.

"Luckily, all of these jobs are on the East Coast," said the young and charismatic Lewis, who celebrated his 30th birthday on May 29, just after the announcement was breaking in Jacksonville.

Courtney Lewis replaces the outgoing Fabio Mechetti, whose tenure with the symphony began in 1999.

"I am excited about coming to Jacksonville and its commitment to the symphony," Lewis said. "There's broad community support here."

Lewis, who launched a new Twitter account @CourtneyConduct hopes to expand the musical selections the orchestra plays to include more modern works.

"I'd like to present different concert experiences that attract my generation as well," he said.

You can follow Melissa Ross on Twitter @MelissainJax.

Melissa Ross joined WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. During her career as a television and radio news anchor and reporter, Melissa has won four regional Emmys for news and feature reporting.