Known for his entertaining programs and clever humor, Michael Krajewski took the helm as Music Director and Conductor of The Philly POPS® with the beginning of The POPS’ 35th season in October 2013. He also serves as principal pops conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Houston Symphony, and the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra.
A conductor who brings an impressive list of symphony guest conductor experiences to his position in Philadelphia, he has worked with orchestras throughout the United States, Canada, and around the globe. In the summer of 2012, he was guest conductor with The Philadelphia Orchestra at The Mann Center. He has also conducted the Cleveland Orchestra, the Boston and Cincinnati Pops, the San Francisco, Baltimore, Detroit, Indianapolis, Seattle, Dallas, St. Louis, Milwaukee and National Symphonies, as well as numerous other orchestras across the United States. In Canada, he has led Ottawa’s National Arts Centre Orchestra, the Calgary Philharmonic, and the Toronto, Edmonton, Winnipeg, and Kitchener-Waterloo Symphonies. Other international appearances include performances with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, the Malaysian Philharmonic, the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, and the Ulster Orchestra in concerts in Belfast and Dublin.
A creative force who enjoys working in many mediums, Michael was the conductor of the video Silver Screen Serenade with violinist Jenny Oaks Baker that aired worldwide on BYU Broadcasting. He also led the Houston Symphony on two holiday albums: Glad Tidings and Christmas Festival.
His musical collaborations are just as creative and extensive. One of The Philly POPS programs — The Sounds of Simon & Garfunkel, which took place in February 2014 — was developed by Michael in partnership with touring artists AJ Swearingen and Jonathan Beedle and has been presented throughout North America. Among the list of internationally respected artists and groups with whom he has collaborated are flutist James Galway, mezzo soprano Marilyn Horne, pianist Alicia de Larrocha, guitarist Angel Romero, and pop artists Roberta Flack, Judy Collins, Art Garfunkel, Kenny Loggins, Ben Folds, Doc Severinsen, Patti Austin, Sandi Patty, Ann Hampton Callaway, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, The Chieftains, Chicago, Pink Martini, Rockapella, Cirque de la Symphonie, Classical Mystery Tour, and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy.
Michael thrives on the creative process including finding new artists and arrangers with whom he can collaborate to bring fresh ideas to pops programs. He explains: “I seek them out and make new partnerships — like when I encouraged James Stephenson to compose the Concerto for Cell Phone, which we performed in Philadelphia in April 2013.”
While Michael lives with his wife Darcy in Orlando, Florida, he has become a great fan of the Philadelphia region. “I am overwhelmed by the warm welcome I have received here and the great new friendships we have developed,” he says. “I look forward to bringing refreshing programs that are new to Pops audiences here.”
When not conducting, Michael enjoys travel, photography, and solving crossword puzzles.