The Minnesota Orchestra Monday named Sarah Hicks as its principal conductor of Pops and Presentations.
Hicks made history at the Orchestra in 2006 when she became the first woman to hold a titled conducting position. She takes over the Pops series from Doc Severinsen, who retired in 2007.
Hicks said we live in what she calls "an iPod Shuffle world" which poses a challenge for classical performers, a challenge she hopes to take on in the pops concerts.
"I really think orchestras are going to need to diversify their offerings in coming years to remain relevant and in touch with their communities," Hicks said. "I see this as really a way of accomplishing that by maintaining musical standards and also really broadening the spectrum of the orchestra. So it's really exciting for me to be on that cutting edge."
Hicks' new contract runs through the 2012-2013 season. It will allow her to continue to lead the popular 'Inside the Classics' concerts, and additional performances as part of the regular orchestra season.