Boston Pops Conductor Keith Lockhart Addresses Undergraduate
Muskingum College held its undergraduate commencement exercises on May 5, featuring an address by Boston Pops Conductor Keith Lockhart. Both bachelor of arts and bachelor of science degrees were conferred.
In recognition of his lifetime of achievement, the College bestowed upon Lockhart an honorary doctor of music degree.
Lockhart is one of the world’s premiere conductors, who delights audiences with his outstanding artistry and versatility of musical styles, communicating his musical vision to listeners from all walks of life.
Born in Poughkeepsie, New York, Lockhart began his musical studies at age seven with piano lessons. He earned a bachelor of music degree in piano and a bachelor’s degree in German, both summa cum laude, from Furman University in 1981. In 1983, he earned his master of fine arts in orchestral conducting from Carnegie Mellon University.
In February 1995, Lockhart was named conductor of the Boston Pops. In the past 12 seasons with the Pops, he has conducted more than 900 concerts, led 28 national tours and four international tours, and recorded ten albums and more than 60 nationally-televised programs. Since 1998, he has also served as music director of the Utah Symphony Orchestra. An active guest conductor, he has led many symphony, chamber and opera orchestras at home and abroad.
He has entertained at legendary venues, including Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, the Olympic Games and the Super Bowl – marking the first time an orchestra was featured in Super Bowl entertainment.
In 2006, Lockhart was named artistic advisor of the prestigious Brevard Music Center, adding a new dimension to his dedicated efforts in developing future generations of musicians and music lovers.
Lockhart is the recipient of numerous honors and awards. Most recently, he received the Bob Hope Patriot Award from the president of the Congressional Medal of Honor Society, in recognition of his annual Boston Pops Fourth of July concerts and their role as a signature national event for our country’s Independence Day celebrations.
Lockhart is the son of Newton Lockhart and 1956 Muskingum College alumna Marilyn Woodyard Lockhart, both of whom were in attendance.
In his commencement address, Lockhart told the graduates, “While commencement is the end of this, it is really the beginning of everything. What you have done here is learn to learn. Live as though you will die tomorrow, learn as though you will live forever. Let today be the commencement of something wonderful.”
A highlight of the day’s events came when Lockhart directed members of the College’s Beta Lambda Chapter of the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity in the singing of several selections. The Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia is a national music honorary fraternity, of which Lockhart was a member as a student at Furman University.