David Itkin currently serves as the Music Director and Conductor of the Las Vegas Philharmonic Orchestra and the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra. In addition, he serves as Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of North Texas, and was recently appointed Conductor Laureate of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra following a 17-year tenure with that orchestra. During his tenure, the Arkansas Symphony has become nationally recognized as a premiere regional orchestra and he is regularly engaged for return performances as guest conductor.
“Ovation after ovation greets Itkin’s quest for excellence… even with the murky sound of Artemis Ham Hall, the precision continued through the Mendelsshohn violin concerto and Brahms second symphony. Same musicians, different presence… it’s exactly why Itkin was hired." --Las Vegas Sun Newspaper
Itkin’s career has taken him to 44 U.S. states and 15 countries in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, including concerts and recordings with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Slovenska Filhamonija, the San Diego Symphony, and the Seoul Philharmonic. Other guest conducting appearances include concerts with the Colorado Philharmonic, the Annapolis Symphony, the National Repertory Orchestra, the Illinois Symphony, the Delaware Symphony, the New Hampshire Symphony, the Cheyenne Symphony, and the Indianapolis, Baltimore, and Reno Chamber Orchestras. During the summer of 2006, Itkin appeared once again with the Slovenska Filharmonija in Ljubljana, Slovenia, conducting the opening concert of the 14th World Saxophone Congress.
Itkin recorded his first film score, Sugar Creek, in 2006 by the Arkansas Symphony for the film’s 2007 release. His most recent major work, Exodus, an oratorio, was premiered in April 2005 in Little Rock, with William Shatner narrating. Exodus was released worldwide on CD in 2007.
In addition to his professional schedule, Itkin regularly collaborates with with artists such as Perlman, deLarracho, Cichter, Perkening, Salerno-Sonnenberg, Watts, and Yo-Yo Ma.
Itkin is also in demand as a radio personality, speaker and lecturer. He has been asked to speak for a wide variety of organizations, including a recent keynote address at a national music conference, the SilverSea cruise lines, two consecutive years as a featured lecturer for the Arkansas Governor’s School, and the Texas Association of Symphony Orchestras. Itkin’s pre-concert talks in Las Vegas and Abilene are regularly attended by more than 250 people, and his hour-long radio program is heard regularly by the Public Radio audiences in Arkansas and Texas.
Itkin’s previous positions include serving as Music Director and Conductor of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra for 17 seasons (1993-2010), Music Director and Principal Conductor of the Lake Forest Symphony Orchestra in Chicago (1997-2000), Music Director/Conductor of the Kingsport Symphony (Tenn.) (1992-1995), Music Director of the Birmingham Opera Theatre (1992-1995), and Music Director for the Lucius Woods Festival Concerts in Solon Springs, Wisconsin (1993-2000). From 1988 to 1993 he served as Associate Conductor of the Alabama Symphony Orchestra, during which time he was made Honorary Lt. Governor of the State of Alabama for outstanding service to the Arts.
In May 2009, Itkin was awarded both an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters by Lyon College and awarded the Above the Barre award by Ballet Arkansas.
“…a stunning performance of mahler’s Syumphony No. 2, Resurrection… a near-perfect way to show how much the orchestra has grown under Itkin’s tenture." --Arkansas Democrat/Gazette