The Seattle Symphony has announced the appointment of SIMON WOODS as executive director. He is to begin working with the orchestra immediately on key institutional decisions and assume full-time duties in May 2011. Hailed as “a proven leader in our field” by Seattle Symphony Board Chair Leslie Jackson Chihuly, Woods was selected by an Executive Director Search Committee led by board member Marco Abbruzzese and including additional board members, musicians, and community representatives. He goes to Seattle from the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, where he has served as chief executive since August 2005. Prior to that he was president and CEO of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, a post he assumed after seven years (1997-2004) as artistic administrator and subsequently vice president for artistic planning and operations at The Philadelphia Orchestra. Before entering the orchestra field Woods was a record producer with EMI Classics in London. A native of the U.K. and a board member of the Association of British Orchestras, Woods holds a music degree from the University of Cambridge and a postgraduate diploma in conducting from the Guildhall School of Music in London. Woods and his wife, Karin Brookes, will relocate to Seattle along with their twelve-year-old son, Barnaby, and their nine-year-old daughter, Isabel.

Simon Woods photo © by Tom Finnie

Posted November 3, 2010