The 18th music director and conductor of the Illinois Valley Symphony Orchestra, is also professor of music at the Conservatory of Music, Wheaton College, where he directs the award-winning Wheaton College Symphony Orchestra and teaches conducting. As a conductor, he has collaborated with such notable artists as vocalists Sylvia McNair and Lawrence Brownlee, composers/pianists Marvin Hamlisch and Michael W. Smith, Broadway starJoel Grey, the Hubbard Street Dance Company II, jazz trumpeter Rob Parton, classical guitarist Ernesto Bitetti, and many of the outstanding faculty performers of the Conservatory of Music.
Dr. Sommerville grew up in Wisconsin and received his Bachelor’s degree in music education from the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh. His masters and doctoral degrees are from Northwestern University, in conducting and composition. He has studied conducting with eminent conductors Sir Georg Solti, Herbert Blomstedt, Franz Allers, and John P. Paynter. Past conducting posts include the Elkhart County Symphony Orchestra (Indiana), the Westminster Chamber Orchestra (Illinois), and the Metropolitan Youth Symphony Orchestra of Chicago. He has been guest conductor of the Sarajevo (Bosnia) Philharmonic, Marquette Symphony, DuPage Symphony, Fox Valley Symphony, and most recently Camerata Chicago. In addition, he is active as conductor and clinician for Illinois high school honors orchestras and festivals.