Dr. Richard Zielinski (Dr. Z) is known for his innovative programming and versatility as both an orchestral and choral conductor. A passionate and compelling communicator, with an extensive knowledge of classical and contemporary repertoire, he has premiered performances of Die Schöpfung, Die Jahreszeiten, and Carmina Burana choreographed for ballet, in addition to stage performances of Ragtime (2015), The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber (2011), Hair (2008), The Rocky Horror Show (2007). Zielinski is also beginning his ninth year as Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Classical Music Festival Eisenstadt Summer Academy in Eisenstadt, Austria and recently was awarded the prized Gold Medal of Achievement by the city Eisenstadt for his artistic achievements and musical contributions. Richard also serves as Director of Choral Activities on the music faculty at the University of Oklahoma. A champion of new music, he has worked with numerous composers, Libby Larsen, Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate, John Mackey, and Michael Daugherty, and regularly leads the choirs at OU and the Norman Philharmonic in performances of contemporary works. His professional vocal ensemble, the Richard Zielinski Singers, has recorded works by Norman Dello Joio, Larsen, Stephen Paulus, David Del Tredici, Alice Parker and Eleanor Daley among others. Dr. Z also serves as Director of Music Ministries at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church in Norman.