European and US Background & Formation

Maestra Kim Diehnelt has been called “a renaissance woman” for her diligent efforts to bring beauty into the world through her work as both an international conductor and accomplished composer. Trained in the US and Europe, Maestra Diehnelt established her craft as conductor and composer in both Finland and Switzerland, leading Baltic, Russian, and European ensembles. In Helsinki, Maestra Diehnelt founded the Helsinki Camerata, a group dedicated to a chamber music approach to orchestral performance.


Maestra Diehnelt has been composing works for solo instruments, chamber, orchestral and choral ensembles since 2011. Her style is best described as a “Nordic Palestrina” as her works possess a lyrical, vocal quality with an attention to beauty and the sense of an unfolding story. She has garnered critical acclaim through recent world premieres in both New York and Chicago.

Current Posts
Northwest Symphony Orchestra,  Music Director and Conductor
Music Director and Conductor:
Southwest Minnesota Orchestra, Lakeside Pride Orchestra, South Loop Symphony, Chicago Reading Orchestra, Helsinki Community College Orchestra and Musicology Department of Helsinki University (Director of Chamber Music).

Opera Millennium,
Goddess Songs   (1995)
American Opera Group,  Die Fledermaus (2006)
American Chamber Opera, Madame Butterfly (2013)
Chicago Folks Operetta, Land of Smiles (2013)
Main Street Opera, Beethoven’s Fidelio (2014)
Guest Conductor:
Maestra Diehnelt is an active guest conductor in the United States and abroad. She received strong praise for her interpretation of the music of Sibelius as Guest Conductor of the Orquestra Sinfónica de Aguascalientes (Mexico). Further guest conducting experience includes:
South Bohemian Chamber Orchestra, Seinäjoki Symphony Orchestra (Finland), Waukegan Symphony Orchestra (IL), Rose City Chamber Orchestra (OR), Civic Orchestra (Chicago, IL), Marshall Area Youth Orchestra (MN), Suburban Youth Symphony Orchestra (IL), VanderCook College of Music Orchestra (Chicago, IL) and Aspen Music Festival.
Artistic Director: Sounds of the South Loop

Composition and World Premieres
Maestra Diehnelt’s composition has quickly found world premieres and is reaching widening audiences through repeated performances.

In 2015, Maestra Diehnelt was selected as Semi-finalist for The American Prize in Composition – Professional Orchestra division.

Impromptu for solo piano, premiered July 2011 in Amsterdam with pianist Anne Ku, and shortly thereafter joined the repertoire of 21st century American composers. International piano artist Avguste Antonov continues to perform this work throughout the world. 

In October 2011, the Waukegan Symphony Orchestra (IL) premiered Caprio for oboe and strings with oboist Joni Day. The west coast premiere was given by the Community Women's Orchestra in Oakland, CA in May 2016. In it's quartet version, Caprio received performances in Chicago (Metropolis Oboe Quartet) and in New York (Face the Music) in January 2015.

The Chicago Cello Society premiered Postscript for solo cello in concert May 2012, and Stile Antico for five-voice cello ensemble, June 2013.

Violist Michael Hall performed the world premiere (Arlington Hts. IL) and encore performance at Orchestra Hall (Chicago, IL) of Montegar for viola and strings in the spring of 2014.

In April 2015 the Rensselaer Concert Choir (Troy, NY) premiered Si Vis Amari Ama.

Maestra Diehnelt's commissioned work Wintram for unaccompanied cello premiered in May, 2016. Cellist Lucie Ticho performed two Chicago concerts, receiving critical praise, "It was a smashing success for cellist and composer alike."

Maestra Diehnelt discusses the craft of composition in a featured podcast at Composer On Fire: Kim Diehnelt on Mastering Composing Through Conducting

Maestra Diehnelt's oeuvre show a refined use of time and gesture, frequently employing counterpoint and modern-modal tonalities within a succinct time frame.

Acknowledged as an authority on the music of Edward Elgar, the Elgar Society in England has sponsored Maestra Diehnelt’s conducting of Elgar’s Symphony No.1, the tone-poem, In the South, and the Cockaigne Overture. In 2010, Maestra Diehnelt was invited to be a founding member of the North America Branch of the Elgar Society. 
Conducting Repertoire and Contemporary Composers 

Maestra Diehnelt’s vast conducting and coaching repertoire covers the works of American, European and Nordic composers. Additionally, she has worked with contemporary composers Bjorn Berkhout, Ivan Božicevic, Sebastian Huydts, Angel Lam, Libby Larsen, Rami Levin, Stephen Paulus, Marjorie Rusche, Dale Trumbore, and Roberto Sierro.
Maestra Diehnelt’s pacing and style reflect an inherent understanding of rhetoric and dramatic flow. She has been praised for her “unusual talent to communicate through the orchestra to her audience”. A discerning essayist and energetic public speaker, Maestra Diehnelt also presents her well-received and innovative Classical Connoisseur© program, a wine-tasting approach to music, and serves as an occasional commentator on classical radio.
“An iconoclast for today’s classical music.”
<April 2017>

Maestra Diehnelt's Sheet Music Available

Sheet Music Plus Classical

Conductor. Composer. Artistic Coach.

“The term 



 belongs to 

Kim Diehnelt.”

Guide to Commissioning Works

You may want to commission a work in honor of a special person or event, offer it as a gift or tribute, or use it to provide repertoire for outstanding artists or instrument types.

A guideline for commissioning rates is available through New Music USA.

Commissioning lets you bring beauty and art into the world!

Founding Member of North American Elgar Society

Acknowledged as an authority on the music of Edward Elgar,  Maestra Diehnelt was invited to be a founding member of the  North America Branch of the Elgar Society.  

The Elgar Society in England has sponsored Maestra Diehnelt’s conducting of Elgar’s works. Her string quartet arrangements of Elgar's Sea Pictures and the Adagio from Symphony No. 1 received  premieres  at the Elgar  Society  conference in Chicago, 2016.



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