The Gulf Coast Symphony Orchestra announced and introduced its new interim music director during a press conference on Monday morning at the Biloxi Saenger Theatre.
"To ensure that our goal of excellence is maintained during this period of transition, we have contracted with one of the most respected maestros in the southern United States, Maestro Peter Rubardt," said Dobbs Dennis, Gulf Coast Symphony secretary.
"As part of the Gulf Coast Symphony Orchestra, Dr. Robardt will take his place at the podium for many symphonies this season, and at that time you will witness the artistic brilliance he brings to the Gulf Coast."
Rubardt was born in Berkley, Calif., and holds a doctor of musical arts degree in orchestral conducting from The Julliard School of Music. He also studied at the Vienna Academy of Music, Tanglewood Music Center and the Las Angeles Philharmonic Institute.
He participated in master classes of Leonard Bernstein, Seiji Ozawa, Andre Previn and Herbert Blomstedt.
Rubardt is in also in his 17th season as music director of the Pensacola Symphony Orchestra.
"Dr. Rubardt is enjoying his second season with the Meridian Symphony Orchestra, and with that Mississippi connection, he is now one of us," Dennis said.
As director of both the Pensacola and Meridian Symphonies, Rubardt has increased attendance, broadened the orchestra's activities and built a large base of support in both communities.
"I believe strongly that a symphony orchestra needs to be a part of the community that supports it -- music as civic service," Rubardt said.
"I hope to get with the board of directors and the musicians in the orchestra and continue that strong base of support that the Gulf Coast Symphony already has."
Rubardt lives in Pensacola with wife Hedi Salanki, a professor in the music department of the University of West Florida. They have two children.