artistic director & principal conductor
Martha Stoddard became Artistic Director of the Oakland Civic Orchestra in 1997, and has led the orchestra through a major transformation over the past two decades. Praised for her clarity, generosity and vision, she continues to guide the orchestra through the unfolding challenges facing our community.
In 2019 Stoddard was named a semi-finalist in the American Prize Competition for Conductors, Community Orchestra Division, and advanced as a finalist in July of 2020. Simultaneously she brought the orchestra into the final round of the Ernst Bacon Prize for the Performance of American Music, for their performance of Bruce Reiprich's Lullaby featuring Christina Owens, violin; J.P. Johnson's Harlem Symphony; and her own Waltz for the Fun of It.
She recently assumed the role of conductor for the newly-formed Piedmont Chamber Orchestra, and held the position of Resident Conductor for Enriching Lives Through Music, from 2017 to 2019. From 2012-2014 she was Program Director for the John Adams Young Composers Program at the Crowden Music Center, and frequently appears as Associate Conductor of the San Francisco Composers’ Chamber Orchestra.
Ms. Stoddard recently retired from Lick-Wilmerding High School after serving for thirty years as Director of Instrumental Music and the Chair of the Performing Arts and is happily filling up her time with more music and more tennis.