Robert Spano (pronounced /ˈspænoʊ/ SPAN-oh) (born 7 May 1961, Conneaut, Ohio) is an American conductor and pianist. Since 2001 he has been Music Director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO), and he served as Music Director of the Brooklyn Philharmonic from 1996 to 2004. He is the Music Director of the Aspen Music Festival and School, beginning full-time responsibilities in the 2012 season.
Spano has gained national and international prominence in recent years, appearing with major orchestras and opera companies throughout the United States and Europe. He is regarded as an advocate of contemporary composers, and has earned a reputation for ambitious and adventurous orchestral programming and presentation.
In addition to raising his profile with, for example, appearances on the Late Show with David Letterman, Spano has made several prominent recordings with the ASO, which have garnered multiple Grammy Awards. Spano has also won the favor of many major music critics, and he is frequently mentioned as a candidate to lead any of the most prominent orchestras in the USA.