Payson City and the Mayor’s Interfaith Committee will be holding the 2023 Payson Easter Sunrise Concert on Sunday, April 9, and will feature local conductor, composer and arranger, Maestro Benjamin K. Winkler.
Maestro Winkler brings over 50 years of international performing experience to the podium, including 21 years as a military musician in the U.S. Army. During that time, he performed in 20 countries on three continents. Since his retirement in 1995, his primary musical focus has been as a conductor.
Maestro Winkler has conducted professionally in 10 states in the U.S. He is the former music director of orchestras in Indiana and Colorado, and since moving to Utah in 2001, he has guest conducted a dozen local instrumental ensembles, and has served as the music director of three community orchestras, including being the founding director of the Nebo Philharmonic.
Internationally, Maestro Winkler has recorded in the Czech Republic with Moravská filharmonie (the Moravian Philharmonic), and competed in international conducting competitions in Romania and Bulgaria. In 2013, he was the only U.S. conductor to advance to the final round of the Black Sea Conducting Competition, where he was also awarded the first honorary mention prize.
Maestro Winkler earned a master’s degree from the University of Utah in orchestral conducting. He took advanced professional studies at the International Conducting Workshop in Bulgaria, and has taken professional master-classes with Jorge Mester, Gustav Meier, and legendary conducting pedagogue Elizabeth Green.
Maestro Winkler also has extensive experience working with choirs. He studied choral composition with James Mulholland, and is an award-winning composer and arranger in his own right. He has conducted choral groups at all levels, from school and church choirs to professional ensembles and opera companies.
In the past few years, Maestro Winkler has taken a break from extensive performing, concentrating instead on composition and arranging. He has established Hawthorne House Music in order to self-publish his music, and currently offers a catalog of over 100 compositions and arrangements.
Maestro Winkler met his wife, Beth, while living in Indianapolis. They currently reside in Payson, UT.
Maestro Winkler and many other accomplished musicians will be at the Payson Easter Sunrise Concert on Sunday, April 9 from 6:30 – 7:30 a.m. at the Peteetneet Auditorium on 10 North 600 East in Payson.
The event is free to the public.