photo cc: Jiyang Chen

Photo cc: Guru Khalsa

Recognized as "an entrepreneur bringing innovation to classical music" (Forbes), Chad Goodman leads an active and diverse conducting career.

As the newly appointed Conducting Fellow of the New World Symphony, Goodman will work closely with Artistic Director Michael Tilson Thomas and take the podium on thirteen programs during the 2019-2020 Season. 

Since 2018, he has served as an Assistant Conductor to the San Francisco Symphony, assisting Esa-Pekka Salonen, Manfred Honeck, Daniel Harding, Pablo Heras-Casado, Simone Young, and James Gaffigan among others. 

As Founder and Artistic Director of Elevate Ensemble, Goodman’s “courageous” and “ambitious” (San Francisco Classical Voice) vision for concert programming resulted in the pairing of music from Bay Area composers with underappreciated gems of the 20th and 21st centuries. Under his leadership, Elevate Ensemble established a Composer-in-Residence program, served as Ensemble-in-Residence at San Francisco State University, and commissioned fifteen works from Bay Area composers.

Goodman has previously served as Music Director of the Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra and Assistant Conductor of the Peninsula Symphony Orchestra. He has been a Conducting Fellow for the Atlantic Music Festival, a cover conductor for the San Francisco Ballet, and has collaborated with composer Mason Bates on his electronica-classical music project, Mercury Soul.

A driving force in the new music scene, Goodman has conducted the premieres of more than fifty works. 

In addition to his performing career, he has discussed the future of live performance as a panelist at Meyer Sound Laboratories and taught young musicians the business and entrepreneurial skills needed to successfully navigate the world as a working musician in his workshop “You Just Earned a Music Degree. Now What?”

Goodman holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music and a Master of Music degree from San Francisco State University. His mentors include Michael Tilson Thomas, Alasdair Neale, Cyrus Ginwala, and Martin Seggelke.


photo cc: Jiyang Chen

photo cc: Jiyang Chen

photo cc: Jiyang Chen

photo cc: Jiyang Chen

photo cc: Jiyang Chen


“Under Goodman’s direction, the orchestra played in a taut, disciplined manner.”

- David Fleshler
South Florida Classical Review

"There was an overwhelming sense of danger in the way director Chad Goodman pushed the players to expressive extremes. Yet this wasn’t some messy free-for-all — Goodman charted a clear formal trajectory, taking his time with the ascending stacks of fourths and Tristan-like pillar chords that serve as structural markers throughout the piece."

"Elevate offered a performance brimming with ecstasy"

"the group [Elevate Ensemble] did manage to channel the energy of an all-out brawl into their exhilarating interpretation."

- Joe Cadagin
San Francisco Classical Voice

"Conductor Chad Goodman led the work [Mason Bates' Garages of the Valley] with energy and precision, producing an impressive result in the playing."

- David Bratman
San Mateo Daily Journal

"Under the direction of Chad Goodman, harpsichordist Derek Tam and the members of Elevate...ignited their intimate performance space while shattering stereotypes about how a harpsichord should sound."

- Jessica Balik
San Francisco Classical Voice

"Goodman provided a smooth and intimate account of of the ensemble writing of both composers [Rodrigo and Respighi]."

- Stephen Smoliar
The Examiner