NEW YORK — Rob Fisher is stepping down as Encores! music director. He has held the position since the concert series’ premiere in 1994 and has been its music director for 32 of the 36 musicals presented by the New York City Center org.

The current season lineup includes vintage tuners “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” (Feb. 10-13), “Purlie” (March 31-April 3) and “The Apple Tree” (May 12-16).

Fisher’s tenure ends at the conclusion of the 2005 season.

The conductor-musician said he wanted to expand his guest duties with the New York Pops, Philadelphia Orchestra and the San Francisco Symphony, among others.

Shuler said Fisher would remain on the Encores! advisory committee and would guest-conduct in the future. He is also involved with choosing his successor, along with Encores! prexy Arlene Shuler and artistic director Jack Viertel.

Emily Skinner will join Sally Murphy and Jason Danieley to headline “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.” The musical, based on Betty Smith’s novel, opened on Broadway in 1951.

Kristin Chenoweth stars in “The Apple Tree.”