Meet the Conductors

John StorgÄrds

John StorgÄrds conductor

Chief Conductor of the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra and Principal Guest Conductor of BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, John Storgårds has a dual career as a conductor and violin virtuoso and is widely recognized for his creative flair for programming and his commitment to contemporary music. He additionally holds the title of Artistic Director of the Chamber Orchestra of Lapland and was the Chief Conductor of the Tampere Philharmonic from 2005 – 2008.

Mr. Storgårds appears with such orchestras as WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Netherlands Radio, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI Torino, BBC Symphony, CBSO and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, all of the major Scandinavian orchestras, as well as with the Sydney, Melbourne and New Zealand symphonies. Soloists with whom he collaborates include Yefim Bronfman, Colin Currie, Sol Gabetta, Håkan Hardenberger, Karita Mattila, Matti Salminen Gil Shaham, Baiba Skride, Christian Tetzlaff, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Frank Peter Zimmermann.

John Storgårds made his North American debut with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra during the 2005/06 season. Since then, he has appeared with the Boston Symphony at Tanglewood, the Cleveland Orchestra at Blossom, and is a regular guest with the National, Toronto, St. Louis, Detroit, Cincinnati, Indianapolis and Houston symphonies and with the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa. During the 14/15 season, he makes his debuts with the Montreal and Atlanta symphonies and returns to the Detroit and St. Louis symphonies, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and the National Arts Centre Orchestra.

Highlights of Mr. Storgårds’ 14/15 season in Europe include a return to the BBC Proms - both with BBC Philharmonic and the Chamber Orchestra of Lapland for their debut at the festival - an appearance with Zurich’s Tonhalle Orchestra conducting the world premiere of a new song cycle by Rolf Martinsson, a tour of South America with Helsinki Philharmonic, his debut with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, and a cycle of Nielsen symphonies with BBC Philharmonic, which will be recorded on the Chandos label.

Storgårds’ much anticipated recording of the complete Sibelius symphonies with the BBC Philharmonic, which includes the Three Late Fragments, thought to be sketches for an eighth symphony, was released on Chandos in the spring 2014. Additional notable releases include discs of works by Korngold and Rautavaara, the latter receiving a Grammy nomination and a Gramophone Award in 2012; and a disc of Holmboe symphonies with Lapland Chamber Orchestra, which was shortlisted for a Gramophone Award and recognized by National Public Radio in Washington, DC as one of the top ten recordings of 2012.

John Storgårds’ repertoire includes all of the Sibelius, Nielsen, Bruckner, Brahms, Beethoven and Schumann symphonies. He gave the Finnish premieres of Schumann’s only opera Genoveva and his early Zwickau symphony, plus world premieres of Sibelius’ Suite op. 117 for Violin and Strings and the Late Fragments. As a violinist, he also gave the Finnish premiere of Schumann’s own violin version of the cello concerto and his Violin Sonata No 3. Storgårds regularly performs world premieres of works by contemporary composers such as Kaija Saariaho, Brett Dean, Per Nørgård and Peteris Vasks, and several of these composers have dedicated their works to him.

Mr. Storgårds studied violin with Chaim Taub, was concertmaster of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra under Esa-Pekka Salonen and subsequently studied conducting with Jorma Panula and Eri Klas at the famed Sibelius Academy. He received the Finnish State Prize for Music in 2002 and the Pro Finlandia Prize 2012.

Conductor John Storgårds / June 2014

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