::Ronald Foster: Composer/Conductor

Welcome to Ronald Foster Music! From my first recording session at Hollywood's Capitol Records, at age 17, to the present, I've been very fortunate to live my life pursuing what I love. Music has taken me from California to Texas, Colorado, New York and, for the past 27 years, Wisconsin. Photos on this site were taken at Atwater Beach on Lake Michigan, where I've received inspiration for much of my music.

Please take a moment to acquaint yourself with my website. You'll find a wide variety of music, from earlier jazz pieces to symphonic and chamber works, my primary focus for over 35 years. Artists and ensembles that I've been honored to have commission, perform, and/or record my music include Aureole/Heidi Grant Murphy, Doc Severinsen, Milwaukee Symphony, Fort Worth Symphony, Charleston Symphony, Dayton Philharmonic, Colorado Springs Symphony, and the Woody Herman Orchestra, reflecting the broad nature of my musical pursuits.

Premiered (2003) by the U.S. Air Force Band of Flight and Dayton Philharmonic, commemorating the Centennial of Powered Flight, Ronald Foster's    . . . on the Wings of Angels draws inspiration from aviation pioneers, while also paying tribute to those who lost their lives in flying accidents and aerial combat. This unique composition includes the Air Force Hymn (instrumentally) and honors the history of flight -- from its early beginnings, Hindenburg, World Wars I and II, Korea and Vietnam, Challenger disaster, USAF Thunderbirds crash, and September 11. The piece has been featured in the League of American Orchestras Symphony magazine, ASCAP Playback, and New Music USA. Plans are underway for multiple performances in 2028, in celebration of the 125th Anniversary of Powered Flight.

As a conductor, I've been privileged to work with many fine orchestras, including the Milwaukee Symphony, Milwaukee Ballet, Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra, Anchorage Symphony, Charleston Symphony, Colorado Springs Symphony, South Carolina Philharmonic, and as Co-Artistic Director of An Evening at the Ballet (with Mireille Favarel), a symphonic program for dancers and orchestra.

One of the joys of a diverse musical career is collaborating with a wide variety of highly-gifted artists. In addition to working with wonderful orchestral, chamber, and jazz musicians, as a conductor and woodwind performer I've had the opportunity to share the stage with some of the country's most beloved performers, including Bob Hope, Sammy Davis, Jr., Shirley Jones, Doc Severinsen, Andy Williams, Debbie Reynolds, Johnny Mathis, Rita Moreno, Red Skelton, Judy Collins, Lou Rawls, Barbara Cook, Jack Jones, Red Buttons, Diahann Carroll, Rosemary Clooney, Al Martino, Gordon MacRae, John Denver, Natalie Cole, Michael Feinstein, Buddy Greco, Louis Bellson, Gary Burton, and Byron Stripling. Professional woodwind opera/show credits: Aida, Don Pasquale, Hydrogen Jukebox, Powder Her Face, Three Decembers, Les Miserables (Broadway), Big (Broadway), Chicago, Evita, 42nd Street, Guys & Dolls, The Wizard of Oz, The Producers, The Sound of Music, Anything Goes, Peter Pan, The World Goes Round, The All Night Strut, Fiddler on the Roof, The Pirates of Penzance, Victor Victoria, Animal Crackers, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, The King and I, HMS Pinafore, Hello Dolly, Fiorello, Iolanthe, White Christmas, I Do! I Do!, Grease, Little House on the Prairie, Legally Blonde, Young Frankenstein, Wicked, The Music Man, West Side Story, Sunday in the Park with George, Billy Elliot, Avenue Q, In the Heights, Hair, Once on this Island, The Book of Mormon, It's a Wonderful Life, Newsies, Sister Act, Motown, Singin' in the Rain, La Cage Aux Folles, Beautiful, Annie, Urinetown, Big River, PippinKiss Me KateElf, Anastasia, A Christmas Story, NunsenseSaturday Night Fever, and 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.

I'm grateful for the opportunity to positively influence younger generations of composers through my past work with the Milwaukee Symphony's Arts in Community Education (ACE) program, the Present Music-Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra John Downey Creation Project, and as composer-in-residence for Glen Hills Middle School (near Milwaukee) from 2001-2020. For over 30 years, I've been blessed to privately teach and mentor gifted young (and not-so-young) composers in Colorado, New York, and Wisconsin -- now internationally, thanks to the internet. Some of the schools my students have gone on to attend include Juilliard, Eastman, Peabody, NYU, USC, Cleveland Institute, Indiana University, Vanderbilt University, Lawrence Conservatory, Northwestern, Berklee, and Columbia College. It's a way to give back, in appreciation for the help and encouragement given to me by countless mentors, composers, conductors, teachers, and professors.

Your comments and suggestions are welcome (Contact page). Thank you for visiting Ronald Foster Music!