Travis Jürgens won 2nd Prize and the President of the Jury Award at the 2019 Bucharest Music Institute International Conducting Competition. He has conducted the Rochester Philharmonic, Colorado Symphony, Alabama Symphony Orchestra, Boulder Philharmonic, and Denver Philharmonic, among others. He has worked with esteemed conductors, including Michael Tilson Thomas and Marin Alsop, who invited Travis to attend the Conductors Guild Composer/Conductor Workshop at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music.
Jürgens has performed in the United States, Europe, and Japan. He has been praised as "a superior conductor" and "well on his way to becoming a major conductor in the world of symphony orchestras" (Opus Colorado). Musicians who have played under his baton have commented on his exceptional talent, dynamic musicianship, efficient rehearsals, and strong leadership.
The fully professional Perrysburg Symphony Orchestra appointed Jürgens as their next Music Director in July 2018. Previously, he was the Music Director of the Ohio Northern Symphony for five seasons, the Lima Area Youth Orchestra for three seasons, the Philharmonia of Kansas City for six seasons, the Associate Conductor of the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra, and a cover conductor for the Colorado Symphony. He also held the position of Associate Conductor of the Lamont Symphony Orchestra and Opera Theatre in Denver, where he received the Leon Guide Outstanding Conductor Award.
During his tenure with the Philharmonia of Kansas City, Jürgens raised the artistic level of the orchestra and helped to increase the audience base, which led to the organization's first sold-out concert. In collaboration with the board and staff, he expanded the education programs to include new outreach programs, competitions, and a mentorship program. He also conducted many world premieres and organized a video shoot with ESPN for a 2011 Halloween Special that was aired on Monday Night Football. As an active fundraiser, he participated in numerous fundraising activities, including book fairs, silent auctions, and the recruiting of board and staff members who created the organization's first annual fund drive. Jürgens formed new collaborations with the Kansas City Children's Chorus, public and private schools, and local choruses; he also continued a partnership with the Kansas City Youth Ballet.
Jürgens' opera and musical theatre credits include Faust, Le Nozze di Figaro, Suor Angelica & Gianni Schicchi, The Drowsy Chaperone, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, The Pirates of Penzance, Cats, A Chorus Line, and Beauty and the Beast. He also performed in a Japan tour of Blast II: MIX.
Travis' former teachers have praised him for his expressive conducting technique,
tremendous energy, thorough preparation, and omnipresent passion for music. He earned his Bachelor’s in Piano Performance with High Distinction from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, his Master’s in Orchestral Conducting from the University of Illinois, and an Artist Diploma from the University of Denver. Additionally, he studied at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien and the Institut für Europäishe Studien in Vienna, Austria. He also made his Viennese debut as guest conductor of the IES Vienna Chamber Orchestra. He has served as Graduate Assistant Conductor at the University of Illinois, and Assistant Conductor for the University of Illinois Opera Theater. His primary conducting teachers include Donald Schleicher, Lawrence Golan, and David Effron. Additionally, he has received instruction from Michael Tilson Thomas, Marin Alsop, Gustav Meier, Larry Rachleff, Jorma Panula, Jin Wang, and many others. As an advocate of new music, Jürgens has performed many world premieres by emerging composers, and works to create innovative programs to engage communities.