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 Yannick Nézet-Séguin, conductor

Photo Marco Borggreve
Photo : Rémy Boily © Gouvernement du Québec (Les Prix du Québec)

In 2012, Montreal-born Yannick Nézet-Séguin added the Music Directorship of The Philadelphia Orchestra to his roles as Music Director of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and long-time Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Orchestre Métropolitain (Montreal), where he has served since 2000.  2017/18 will be his tenth and final season with the Rotterdam Philharmonic and will draw to a close with the orchestra’s centenary celebrations in Rotterdam and round Europe.  In 2020/2021 he succeeds James Levine as the third Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera, New York and remains in post with The Philadelphia Orchestra until at least summer 2026.  

Mr Nézet-Séguin has worked with many leading European ensembles and enjoys close collaborations with the Berlin Philharmoniker, Wiener Philharmoniker, Bayerischer Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester and Chamber Orchestra of Europe; between 2008 and 2014 he was also Principal Guest Conductor of London Philharmonic Orchestra.  He has appeared three times at the BBC Proms and at many European festivals, among them Edinburgh, Lucerne, Salzburg and Grafenegg.  North American summer appearances include New York’s Mostly Mozart Festival, Lanaudiere, Vail and Saratoga. 

He made his Salzburg Festival opera debut in 2008 with a new production of Roméo et Juliette, returning in 2010 and 2011 for Don Giovanni.  In the 2009/10 season, he made his Metropolitan Opera debut with their new production of Carmen and has returned each season (Otello, Don Carlo, Faust, La Traviata and Rusalka). Next season, he conducts Wagner there for the first time (Der Fliegende Holländer).  

He has conducted for Teatro alla Scala (Milano), Royal Opera House (Covent Garden, London), Netherlands Opera (Amsterdam) and Wiener Staatsoper (Vienna). In 2011 began a cycle of seven Mozart operas for Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, all recorded live by Deutsche Grammophon. Le Nozze di Figaro, the fourth of the titles, is scheduled for release later this year.

Season 2015-2016 has included Elektra (Opéra de Montréal), European tours with the Rotterdam Philharmonic and with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, two German tours with the Wiener Philharmoniker and with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Asian Tour with The Philadelphia Orchestra, and concert series with the Bayerischer Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester, all these adding up to his regular activities with his three orchestras. The season concludes with a return to the 2016 Salzburg Festival with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe for Haydn’s Die Schöpfung

In addition to Le Nozze di Figaro, recent Deutsche Grammophon releases include the Complete Schumann symphonies and Enführung aus dem Serail with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe; The Rite of Spring and Rachmaninov Variations with Daniil Trifonov and The Philadelphia Orchestra; and Tchaikovsky with the Rotterdam Philharmonic and Lisa Batiashvili.  Nézet-Séguin’s discography also includes recordings with the Rotterdam Philharmonic (EMI Classics, BIS and DG); London Philharmonic (LPO label); Bayerischer Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester (BR Klassik) and Orchestre Métropolitain (ATMA Classique). 


Photo Marco BorggrevePhiladelphia Orchestra, Photo Chris Lee


Photo Marco Borggreve
Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Photo Marco Borggreve

Mr Nézet-Séguin studied piano, conducting, composition, and chamber music at the Conservatoire de musique du Québec in Montreal, and choral conducting at the Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey before going on to study with renowned conductors, most notably the Italian maestro Carlo Maria Giulini. His honours include Musical America’s Artist of the Year (2016), Royal Philharmonic Society Award; Canada’s National Arts Centre Award, the Prix Denise-Pelletier awarded by the Quebec government, and the Medal of Honour from the National Assembly of Quebec (2015).  He holds honorary doctorates from the University of Quebec in Montreal (2011), Curtis Institute in Philadelphia (2014) and Westminster Choir College of Rider University (2015). He has received the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres du Québec (2015). He was appointed a Companion of the Order of Canada (2012) and Officer of the Order of Québec (2015).

Adapted from Askonas Holt’s biography


Updated by CNS, June 2016

This biography is for reference only and should not be reproduced..