Powerfully compelling, Deanna Tham is known for her captivating and tenacious spirit on and off the podium. She is currently the Associate Conductor of the Oregon Symphony and Music Director of the Union Symphony Orchestra.
Previously, Tham was the Assistant Conductor of the Omaha Symphony, following her tenure as Assistant Conductor of the Jacksonville Symphony and Principal Conductor of the Jacksonville Symphony Youth Orchestras. She has performed at the Proms in Royal Albert Hall, Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, and Seiji Ozawa Hall at the Tanglewood Music Center working with Maestros James Ross, Joseph Young, and Sir Antonio Pappano, as well as renowned artists Isobel Leonard and Joyce DiDonato. Guest engagements include the Oregon Symphony, Spokane Symphony, Ballet Idaho, Opera Idaho, OrpheusPDX, and 45th Parallel. Recent highlights include leading the all-women Broadway Sinfonietta in the world-premiere of Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse live with symphonic score, Jacksonville Symphony's first educational Martin Luther King Jr. tribute concert and the Union Symphony's first city-community Pops on the Plaza collaboration of Latin American pop and classical music.
Tham is passionate about cross-genre collaborations. These projects include full-feature blockbuster movie scores, collaborations with Cirque Musica, broadway artists, pop cover groups like Jeans 'n Classics, independent artists like Silent Film Score connoisseur and composer, Ben Model, Southern Range Brewery, the Louisville Ballet Academy, and the International Culinary Arts and Sciences Institute. She is additionally a staunch advocate of music education from school education engagement and youth orchestral performing opportunities to lifelong learning. Tham has also written original school-curriculum-based programs for numerous symphony orchestras and collaborated with organizations including the Central Academy for Technology and Arts.
Tham is a second-place winner in the Youth Orchestra Conductor division of the American Prize. She has worked with renowned conductors Marin Alsop, James Ross, Victor Yampolsky, and Ken Kiesler. In 2013, Tham's work with the festival was featured on National Public Radio as well as American Public Media. Tham holds a Professional Studies Certificate from the Cleveland Institute of Music in Orchestral Conducting studying with Maestro Carl Topilow. She received her Master of Music in conducting with conducting program honors from Northwestern University studying with Dr. Mallory Thompson. Tham received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in horn performance studying with Dennis Abelson, Zachary Smith, Bob Lauver, and Steven Kostyniak at Carnegie Mellon University.