Inside Stories

Lowell Philharmonic Passes the Baton to Smith

LOWELL – As it embarks on its 120th season, the Lowell Philharmonic Orchestra will have a new Music Director/Conducter leading the music. Marshunda Smith takes the baton from Thomas Kociela beginning with the LPO Holiday Concert 2023.

Marshunda is a vibrant, spiritual, exciting conductor who leads with an immersive style of conducting.  She is a renown cellist with several recordings, she also conducts the Cherry Hill Chamber Orchestra, and has many other wonderful projects.  Her website,, is brimming with the joy she expresses in everything she does.  Having Marshunda on the podium will inject new energy into the orchestra as well as into the City of Lowell!

Originally hailing from Tennessee, earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and pursued her Master’s degree in Orchestral Conducting with a focus on Music Education at the University of Southern Maine. Throughout her journey, Marshunda has received mentorship from conductors such as James Fellenbaum, Victor Yampolsky, Robert Lehmann, Harold Farberman, Richard Rosenberg, Gregory Pritchard, Adrian Gnam and Philip Greenberg.

During her time in Maine, Marshunda’s conducted the Odeon Youth Orchestra and guest conducted at various music festivals in the state. Marshunda made history by guest conducting the North Shore Philharmonic Orchestra, becoming the orchestra’s second female conductor in two decades and the first African American conductor in its 70-year history.

Marshunda co-founded the groundbreaking No-Name Orchestra of Boston.  Now in its 8th year, the No-Name Orchestra continues to captivate audiences with its unique approach, performing at least three times a year across the Boston metro area.

Marshunda channels her artistic energies into “The Marshunda Project presents.” The inaugural project, which premiered on October 5, 2019, featured new compositions by local talents and brought lesser-known works for chamber orchestra into the spotlight.

Beyond her musical endeavors, Marshunda is a dedicated educator, inspiring the next generation of musicians. She imparts her unique blend of passion and quirkiness to her students at the Waldorf School in Beverly, MA, where she also maintains a private music studio for violin, viola, and cello students.

The Lowell Philharmonic Orchestra was founded in 1903 and re-established in 1987.  Find out more about the Lowell Philharmonic Orchestra at

3 responses to “Lowell Philharmonic Passes the Baton to Smith”

  1. Bonnie Stoloff says:

    I would like to be on your email distribution list.

  2. Bonnie Stoloff says:

    I would like to be on your email distribution list as l am a former teacher of Marshunda!

  3. Hey Mrs. Stoloff,
    We will make sure that you are added to the orchestras list. 🤎

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