An award-winning composer and conductor who truly loves aural textures, Glasgow's music is fresh (but not too weird!).  Choral, orchestral, handbells, musical theatre.  Commissions accepted.


Michael J. Glasgow is a native of Detroit, and his family still lives in Michigan.  An honors graduate from the College of Charleston (SC), Michael holds B.A. degrees in music theory/composition, and in journalism.  He holds a summa cum laude Master of Church Music degree from Concordia University Wisconsin as a rare double-emphasis student, in both choral and handbell music.

Michael has composed four musical plays (two of which premiered in Charleston's Sottile Theatre), as well as numerous original sacred choral, orchestral, and handbell compositions. His Requiem premiered on April 8, 2001, with full orchestra and choir, at North Raleigh United Methodist Church (where Michael has served as Minister of Music since 1998).  Its ten-year anniversary presentations on April 10, 2011 received tremendous acclaim.  On June 11, 2017 – his 40th birthday – Michael made his Carnegie Hall debut, conducting the work in New York City’s iconic venue.

An active member of ACF, ACDA, ASCAP, Mensa and more, Michael participates in many extracurricular and educational pursuits.  He serves as the Bass Section Leader for the North Carolina Master Chorale and the Choral Conductor for the Tar River Orchestra & Chorus (Rocky Mount, NC).  He is a dynamic, energizing musician who connects well with people and music, and as such is sought after for conducting engagements throughout the country and abroad.

Career highlights include serving as a designer of and the inaugural conductor for the annual Anthornis events for advanced ringers in Minneapolis (and its counterpart, Anthornis North, in Fargo).  Summer 2013 marked his international conducting debut, as a conductor for the Handbell Ringers of Great Britain Ringing Residency Week in Sheffield, England; a return engagement was almost immediately booked for 2015, and then, 2017.

He has also conducted in the Caribbean, eastern Canada and Hong Kong; engagements are currently contracted for Austria, Singapore and western Canada.

Michael's greatest joys are composing and conducting, but in his admittedly limited spare time, he enjoys weightlifting, yoga and gourmet cooking.

Additional information and samples of Michael's work may be found at

Describe your music

Michael's music (particularly his orchestral work) has been described as "neo-Romantic," making use of a wide spectrum of colors and textures. Michael was heralded by New York Concert Review for his "abundant melodic gift," and he prides himself on making music without gimmicks. His work is engaging: it is interesting to the trained academic musician, but not too "cerebral" for the casual listener.

Interested in collaborating with

Orchestras (particularly out-of-the-box-but-not-gimmicky ones)
Choruses (particularly those who recognize that everything was once unknown)
Cirque du Soleil (Dying to compose the music for a new "Cirque" show!)

Though Michael loves handbells, he's found himself a bit "pigeon-holed" by the instrument, with people not even realizing he composes for and conducts choral and orchestral works as well, though his initial steps into these genres have been large ones:

His first published choral piece, Welcome the King (an SATB carol accompanied by solo viola), won the 2009 VocalEssence "Welcome Christmas" composition contest, and is published by Boosey & Hawkes.

In 2013, Michael was commissioned by Malmark Bellcraftsmen to compose the Concerto for Cymbells, a multi-movement symphonic work featuring a virtuosic part for a solo percussionist on the Cymbells instrument. Plans are in the works for a worldwide premiere in Hong Kong in 2020.

Michael conducted his Requiem with full orchestra and 125-voice chorus in Carnegie Hall in 2017, and will conduct the European premiere of the work in Vienna in June 2019.

Additional info

Michael always has interesting fodder for pet projects, but somewhere, someone has to take a chance on an "unknown name" in the arenas of choral and orchestral music. For those seeking an energetic, creative, purposeful musician with fresh ideas and quick responses, contact is more than welcome to begin discussions on commissions and/or collaborative efforts!