Faculty and Staff
|Title:||Sarah Bolick Smith Distinguished Professor of Music / Director of Orchestras / Interim
Director of Bands
|School of Music|
School of Music Room 117
Scott Weiss is the Director of Orchestras and Sarah Bolick Smith Distinguished Professor of Music at the University of South Carolina where he conducts the USC Symphony Orchestra and teaches instrumental conducting. Born in Monterey, California in 1967, Dr. Weiss holds an undergraduate degree from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and both a master’s and a doctoral degree from the University of Illinois where he studied conducting with Donald Schleicher. Prior to his tenure at the University of South Carolina, Weiss held conducting posts at the University of Kansas and the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.
Scott Weiss maintains an active international conducting schedule, including recent concerts in China with the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra, the Hunan Symphony Orchestra, the Nanchang Philharmonic, the Shandong Symphony Orchestra, and the Inner Mongolia Symphony Orchestra. In July 2018 he returned to China for his debut with the Tianjin Opera Orchestra in the Tianjin Grand Theatre Concert Hall and a return engagement with the Hunan Symphony Orchestra in Changsha.
Dr. Weiss’s graduate conducting studio at the University of South Carolina is an international draw for talented young conductors. Former students include the winner of the 2016 Danube International Conducting Competition and the winner of the 2018 Bucharest Music Institute International Conducting Competition, and graduates of his program hold major conducting and academic positions around the world. Dr. Weiss is frequently invited to conduct performances and teach masterclasses at leading music schools and conservatoires around the world, including the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, the Central Conservatory of Music (Beijing), the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, and the University of Western Australia. In the summer, Dr. Weiss teaches alongside British conductor Neil Thomson at the Los Angeles Conducting Workshop.
Weiss has recorded several critically-acclaimed CD’s on the Naxos and Summit Records labels. A passionate advocate of new music, he has commissioned and premiered dozens of works by many of today’s leading composers, including Jennifer Higdon, Zhou Long, Nico Muhly, Joseph Schwanter, and William Bolcom.
Scott and his wife, Teah, reside in Columbia and are the proud parents of their son, John, a sophomore chemical engineering major in the Honors College at USC. In addition to teaching and conducting, Scott enjoys traveling, surfing, and playing golf.