Christian Baldini conducts the UC Davis Symphony.

UC Davis Symphony Orchestra
Christian Baldini, music director and conductor

COVID-19 Update—

During Winter Quarter 2021, the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra will be taught asynchronously as the following course:

“Topics of Orchestral Practice, Habits & Traditions”. 

This course is open to all UC Davis students (regardless of their major) who are interested in learning about orchestral music. In a sense it is like entering the “kitchen”, and seeing from inside all the details of what it means to be a professional performing musician and a conductor.

How does it work?

It’s very simple and fun, really. I will be uploading a private YouTube video every week. These videos will be related to what we do as musicians, and I will be presenting and featuring some guest speakers, which will include:

  • interviews with professional musicians, soloists, singers, composers and orchestra administrators
  • interviews with conductors: what does a conductor do, exactly? 
  • topics of discussion: which composers interest you, and why?
  • interview with orchestra musicians about preparing auditions, about playing in a professional orchestra.
  • conducting opera, working with singers and stage directors (interviews with directors and singers)
  • collaborations with choirs (interviews with folks in the choral world)
  • performing/conducting new music: collaborating with living composers. (interviews with composers)
  • watch parties: we will schedule two watch parties in which we will focus on one specific symphonic work (I will ask for suggestions)

As a sample, this is a playlist containing 11 interviews that I created for this class in Spring 2020.

If you have any questions about the UCDSO, email Professor Baldini at

What do you have to do, in order to pass this class? (It’s a P/NP class)

  1. register, using this CNR: 33559
  2. watch my weekly videos, and provide comments in our “Commentary Room” (an online document). I will take your comments into consideration to continue creating the course content in future interviews and videos.
  3. if you play an instrument or sing, you are welcome to send me any videos that you create if you would like feedback from me about your playing or singing. (this is not required)
  4. you can set up a time to meet with me via Zoom if you’d like to talk about music or to discuss any of the videos or interviews. (this is not required)

Here is my YouTube channel (in which you will find the course videos, as well as many current and vintage videos of performances).

Course Information
  • MUS 141 (CRN 33559 for Winter Quarter 2020)
  • Meets via zoom some Tuesdays at 8:00 pm (Fall Quarter 2020), meetings will be recorded and shared with those who cannot attend.
  • 2 units

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