Michael Polo leads the Vienna Summer Music Festival as the Executive Director. Having served as general manager for numerous music festivals, producing several professional operas, and being a business owner and an avid arts-philanthropist, Michael brings with him the invaluable experience of connecting young artists with great teachers.
With a strong knowledge of both organizational behavior and arts administration, Michael has been responsible for the facilitation of over $150,000 for student arts programs in the state of Florida, which brought in over 80 visiting guest artists for art, music, and dance programs. His dedication to the arts in state of Florida led him to be awarded a Certificate of Recognition for the Advocacy of the Arts by the Florida Higher Education Arts Network.
Trained as a composer, Michael has worked closely with choreographers, photographers, videographers, painters, sculptors, and has worked collaboratively with several installation artists providing digital sound. He has also composed works for orchestra, wind ensemble, voice, interactive/fixed electronics, and a variety of chamber ensembles.
Michael’s research focuses on music and its impacts on human physiology. He recently completed an empirical study involving post-tonal music and human emotion. His study revealed musical structures, divorced of harmonic function, and their capacity to change human physiology, including heart rate and electrodermal activity. As a composer, Michael identifies research as a means to develop a new music in the 21st century.
Michael holds a Ph.D. in Music Composition and a Master of Science in Management from the University of Florida. He completed his Masters of Music in Composition from George Mason University and a Bachelors of Music in Composition from Rowan University.