Alabama School of Fine Arts is pleased to announce Alexander Fokkens as the new chair of the ASFA Music Department. Fokkens is currently living in Cape Town, South Africa where he serves as the artistic director and CEO of the Free State Symphony Orchestra, conductor of the Free State Youth Symphony Orchestra, music director of the Symphony Choir of Cape Town, music director and conductor of the University of Cape Town String Ensemble and Symphonic Band and resident conductor of the University of Cape Town Symphony Orchestra.
Fokkens is one of the most sought-after conductors in his native South Africa. He has conducted on many different podiums across the globe ranging from professional orchestras to string ensembles of 12-year-old musicians. He has performed in La Turbie, France; Ravenna, Italy; the Millennium Centre, Cardiff, Wales; The Royal Festival Hall, Southbank, London, UK; and The Hippodrome, Birmingham, UK. He has been invited as a guest speaker and conductor at Grinnell College, Concordia College, and Texas Christian University, where he also served as sabbatical replacement for his conducting professor.
Fokkens says, “What excites me the most about coming to ASFA are the amazing people that I have already met online. There is an energy and love for the arts and learning among the staff, students and faculty that I have engaged with over the last few weeks that is just infectious. I feel lucky to have been chosen to be a part of this program.”
Fokkens will begin at ASFA in the fall of 2021 once his visa paperwork is completed and approved.