CYSA Music Director
Dr. Frank M. Diaz joined CYSA as only its second CYS Conductor in June, 2013. He became CYSA Music Director July 1st, 2014, upon the retirement of Founder Charles Creighton. Dr. Diaz is the second CYSA Music Director in the history of the organization.
Dr. Diaz is currently on the faculty at the University of Oregon, where he teaches courses on music education, psychology of music, and music research. Before his appointment at Oregon, he served as a conductor for the Philharmonia, University Symphony, and New Music Ensemble at Florida State University. As a public school teacher, Dr. Diaz was director of the award-winning orchestra program at Satellite High School in Satellite Beach, Florida. His ensembles regularly participated at state and regional festivals, and were selected to perform at venues such as the International Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic and the Music Educators National Conference. In 2006, in recognition for making outstanding contributions to music education, Satellite High School was named a Grammy Signature School by the Grammy Foundation. Dr. Diaz has also appeared as a guest conductor, honor group conductor, clinician, and adjudicator for ensembles in the southeastern, mid-Atlantic, and Pacific northwest regions of the United States. An avid trombonist, he has performed with numerous orchestras, chamber groups, and jazz groups on both the east and west coast.
Along with his experiences as an educator and performer, Dr. Diaz is a researcher and lecturer in the field of music education and music psychology. His articles appear in numerous journals and magazines, and he is a regular presenter at professional conferences, universities, and for civic and arts groups both internationally and throughout the United States. His research deals primarily with the psychology of musical engagement, using cognitive science as a way of exploring the conditions that lead to peak emotional experiences during music listening, learning, and performance. Dr. Diaz serves in leadership positions for a number of organizations, including the National Association for Music Education, the Oregon Music Education Association, and the University of Oregon’s Institute for Cognitive and Decision Sciences.
Dr. Diaz lives in Eugene, Oregon, with his wife Jennifer, his daughter Madison, his two beagles – Beanie and Skittles, and his cat Beau.