Home

Home

Bio

San Francisco Ballet
Principal Guest Conductor

Festival Napa Valley
Program Director – Blackburn Music Academy

Merced Symphony
Music Director

Berkeley Symphony
Associate Conductor and Education Director

Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra
Music Director

Conductor Ming Luke is rapidly establishing himself as an exciting and versatile conductor to watch. In the past seasons he has worked with ensembles across the US, UK, Russia, France, Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Hungary, and Austria; and has conducted orchestras such as: Kennedy Center Opera Orchestra, Birmingham Royal, San Francisco Ballet, Houston Symphony, New York City Ballet Orchestra, Boston Ballet, l’Orchestre Prométhée (France), Gödöllő Symphony Orchestra (Hungary), Opera San José, Nashville Symphony/Ballet, Billings Symphony, Sacramento Opera, Napa Regional Dance Company, Sacramento Philharmonic, Komorni Orchestr Akademie of Prague, the Napa Valley Symphony, and others. The Napa Valley Register said that his conducting had “his audience as much in his thrall as his musicians.” Also the Music Director of the Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra, a well-regarded institution in Berkeley, he is only the third Music Director in 50 years.

Equally talented as a ballet conductor, Luke has been the primary guest conductor with the San Francisco Ballet for the past few season and conducted the company over fifty times at the San Francisco War Memorial. Embarking on five separate tours with the company, he conducted Romeo and Juliet and Cinderella at the Kennedy Center and made his English debut at Sadler’s Wells. Luke was invited to prepare the Bolshoi Orchestra in Russia for a special festival featuring some of the top ballet companies around the world and conducted the company with l’Orchestre Prométhée in Paris as part of a residency with Les Etés de la Danse. Famed dancer Natalia Makarova stated, “Ming has a mixture of pure musicality and a sensitivity to needs of the dancers, which are such rare qualities.”

Luke is the Music Director for the Merced Symphony in the California central valley. Recognized nationally for his innovative education programs, Luke has written, arranged, and performed over 150 education concerts with the Berkeley Symphony, for whom he is the Associate Conductor. He has served on grant panels for the National Endowment of the Arts and the Grants and Cultural Committee of the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission. An exciting pops conductor, Luke has created and conducted a variety of pops concerts in many venues, from baseball stadiums, to picnics in the park with over 4,000 people in attendance, traditional concert halls and recording for Major League Baseball.

Ming Luke holds a Master of Fine Arts in Conducting from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Music in Music Education and Piano Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College of Rider University.

Calendar

SEPTEMBER

Torch Film Recording
Christopher Coppola Film
September 24, 2017
For more information click here.

Merced Symphony
Season Opening Concert
World Premiere Co-commission Libby Larsen
September 29, 2017
For more information click here.

OCTOBER

Abraham in Flames
Opera Workshop
October 1-4, 2017
Wilsey Opera Center
For more information click here.

San Francisco Opera
Magic Flute
ARIA Program
October 26, 2017
Wilsey Opera Center
For more information click here.

NOVEMBER

Berkeley Symphony
Family Concerts
November 4, 2017 ~ 10:00am and 11:30am
For more information click here.

Berkeley Symphony
Meet the Symphony
November 2017
For more information click here.

Billings Symphony
Nutcracker
November 25M, 25E, 26, 2017
For more information click here.

DECEMBER

Nashville Ballet
Nutcracker
December 2, 3, 9, 10, 21, 22, 23
For more information click here.

San Francisco Ballet
Nutcracker
Dates TBD
For more information click here.

JANUARY

Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra
January 5, 6, 7, 2018
For more information click here.

Merced Symphony
Education Concerts
January 18 – 9:30, 11:00am
January 19 – 9:30, 11:00am
For more information click here.

Merced Symphony
Pops Concert
January 19, 2018
For more information click here.

San Francisco Ballet
Gala
January 18, 2018
For more information click here.

San Francisco Ballet
Program 1
January 2018 – dates TBD
For more information click here.

FEBRUARY

San Francisco Ballet
Program 2
February 2018 – dates TBD
For more information click here.

San Francisco Ballet
Program 3
February 2018 – dates TBD
For more information click here.

Berkeley Symphony
I’m a Performer Concerts
February 2018
For more information click here.

MARCH

San Francisco Ballet
Program 4
March 2018 – dates TBD
For more information click here.

San Francisco Ballet
Program 5
March 2018
For more information click here.

APRIL

San Francisco Ballet
New Works Festival
April 2018 – dates TBD
For more information click here.

Merced Symphony
Subscription Concert
April 13, 2018
For more information click here.

MAY

San Francisco Ballet
New Works Festival
May 2018 – dates TBD
For more information click here.

Boston Ballet
Sleeping Beauty
May 11, 12, 13, 2018
For more information click here.

Houston Ballet
Global Movements
May 24-June 3, 2018
For more information click here.

JUNE

Houston Ballet
Don Quixote
June 7-17, 2018
For more information click here.

Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra
June 22, 23, 44, 2018
For more information click here.

Press

“Ming Luke delivered the best live theater performance I’ve ever heard of [Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet]”

Allan Ulrich
San Francisco Chronicle

“[Luke’s Dvorak’s Requiem at Dvorak Hall in Prague] was truly outstanding…make that mind blowing.”

Nancy Graham Holm
Huffington Post

“A spectacular concert by the new, 90-piece Symphony Napa Valley under the baton of Ming Luke, the symphony’s new music director who has honed the orchestra to musical perfection.”

George Starke
Napa Valley Register

“An intensely romantic approach, one that more completely reflects the allure of the durable Glazunov music, conducted with abandon by Ming Luke.”

Allan Ulrich
San Francisco Chronicle

“With limitless energy and inventiveness, Ming’s family and education concerts are ​both highly entertaining and​ educational.”

René Mandel, Executive Director
Berkeley Symphony

“Ming Luke’s conducting ensured the [San Francisco Ballet Orchestra’s] spirited rendition of the Glazunov score.”

Janos Gereben
SF Examiner

“The San Francisco Ballet orchestra played brilliantly under the direction of Ming Luke.”

Carla Escoda
Huffington Post

“[Luke] has the energy, creativity and charisma not seen in a family show since Leonard Bernstein…and I don’t say this lightly.”

Paul Jan Zdunek, Executive Director
Pasadena Symphony

“Maestro Ming Luke, who so skillfully and sensitively conducted this variety of selections from baroque to Broadway, [had] his audience as much in his thrall as his musicians.”

James Keolker, Napa Valley Register

“One of the hallmarks of the evening’s performance was watching Conductor Ming Luke lead the orchestra in Richard Strauss’ Don Juan, Op. 20. His entire body became a representation of the music. Beginning with staccato jerks of his arms, he wielded the sounds of sections together with grand loops in the air, as if stirring a massive caldron filled with frequencies and vibration. In the soft middle of the piece, his right hand signaled while his left seemed to caress the sound. And near the finish he reached down just a bit below his waist and grabbed for the allegro runs of the violins — pulling a hidden and magical sound out of the caverns of the instruments, their players, the room and the world beyond the knotty pine walls.”

Anne Henderson, Ellsworth American

“The evening began with a spirited reading of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s evocative Russian Easter Overture. Here assistant conductor Ming Luke drew a crisp performance from the orchestra’s horn section. With this work, the orchestra affected a burnished Slavic sheen, with fine brass playing throughout…”

Edward Ortiz, Sacramento Bee

“The symphony came off effortlessly in the Philharmonic’s hands. By the third movement it became clear that Luke and the orchestra were locked in to the work. It was as if the orchestra was honing an already precise musical edge down to a very fine and exact point.”

Edward Ortiz, Sacramento Bee