Search Underway for New Executive Director


The Oklahoma City Philharmonic is pleased to announce a new multi-year contract extension for Music Director Alexander Mickelthwate.

“This marks the beginning of my fifth season leading the OKCPHIL,” Mickelthwate said. “It is truly a thrill to work with musicians of this caliber. Individually, they are so incredibly talented, and as an orchestra they are a source of pride for our entire community.

“An Oklahoma audience is something else to behold,” Mickelthwate continued. “They are so much fun and enthusiastic about what we do. And we feel that energy on the stage. They give us love, and we give it right back. I came to Oklahoma City 5 years ago, and right away felt like this was home. I lived in New York, Los Angeles and Atlanta, and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else but here. It has the feel of a large city, yet small enough for a sense of community. My wife and sons and I love it here and Oklahoma City has become our home.”

Mickelthwate will lead the orchestra as the OKCPHIL takes the stage at 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17 at Civic Center Music Hall to kick off its new season. World-renowned pianist Garrick Ohlsson will be the featured soloist in a program that includes works by Gabriela Lena Frank, Beethoven, and Strauss.

The OKCPHIL is also welcoming a new Director of Development. Blossom Crews brings extensive experience in leadership and fundraising. Her previous roles include work at The Virtue Center, as well as Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Oklahoma, and United Way of Central Oklahoma. Crews begins her new role on Sept. 22.

And OKCPHIL Executive Director Agnieszka Rakhmatullaev will leave the organization at the end of November, after 3.5 years with the organization. She will assume a new position as the Senior Vice President & Chief Operating Officer of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.

"Few people in the industry could have pulled our beloved orchestra through the pandemic, continuing to serve our audiences, like Agnieszka,” said OKCPHIL Board President Jane Jayroe Gamble. “She is a bright star with a big heart. Regretfully, we say ‘goodbye’ but gratefully, we say thanks for outstanding leadership during a difficult time."

The search process for Rakhmatullaev replacement is underway, led by the Search Committee which is chaired by President-Elect Jerrod Shouse.

More information on the OKCPHIL, it’s concerts and programs, can be found on the website at