yannick nezet seguin biographie

Yannick Nézet-Séguin

In September 2018, Yannick Nézet-Séguin becomes the third Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera, New York. Music Director of the Philadelphia Orchestra since 2012 and the Orchestre Métropolitain of Montreal since 2000, he becomes Honorary Conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra after being their Music Director from 2008 to 2018. He is also Honorary Member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.

Yannick has worked with many leading European ensembles and enjoys close collaborations with Berliner 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 many times at the BBC Proms and at many European festivals, among them Edinburgh, Lucerne, Salzburg and Grafenegg (Vienna). North American summer appearances include New York’s Mostly Mozart Festival, Lanaudiere, Vail and Saratoga. With the Philadelphia Orchestra, he goes regularly to Carnegie Hall where he has been Perspectives Artist in 2019-2020. He also conducts master classes, notably at two of the most renowned institutions, the Curtis Institute of Philadelphia and the Julliard School of New York.

2013/14 marked the start of his three-year term as Artist-in-Residence at Konzerthaus Dortmund which featured The Philadelphia Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Bayerischer Rundfunk, Berliner Philhamoniker, Wiener Philharmoniker and chamber concerts.

He conducts regularly The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and The Chamber Orchestra of Europe on Asian and European tours. In November 2017, he has led with great success the Orchestre Métropolitain of Montreal in its very first European tour followed, in November 2019, by a very prestigious American tour with the singer Joyce DiDonato.

Yannick is equally comfortable in the pit and on the concert podium. After doing his first opera conducting experiences for the Opéra de Montréal from 2000 to 2004, in L'Incoronazione di Poppea, Le Barbier de Séville, Cosi fan tutte, Pelléas et Mélisande and L'Elisir d'amore, he returned once in a while for Wozzeck, Madame Butterfly, Salomé and Elektra. 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; then, he has returned each season to conduct Don Carlo, Faust, La Traviata, Rusalka, Otello, Der fliegende Hollander, Parsifal and Elektra before he was named Music Director beginning with the season 2018-2019. During his first season at this post, he conducts La Traviata, Pelléas et Mélisande and Dialogues des Carmélites,Turandot and Wozzeck. He has conducted for Teatro alla Scala, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Netherlands Opera and Vienna State Opera; with the Rotterdams Philharmonisch Orkest, just before the pandemic began, he conducted a Stage version of Richard StraussDie fraù ohne schatten. In 2011, he began the cycle of Mozart's mature operas for Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, all recorded live by Deutsche Grammophon; until today, the following titles have been released: Di Zauberflöte; La Clemenza di Tito; Le Nozze di Figaro; Entführung aus dem Serail; Cosi fan tutte; Don Giovanni, most of them with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.

The maestro records in exclusivity with Deutsche Grammophon. September 2013 marks his first symphonic recording for the prestigious yellow label; for the occasion, he conducted the Philadelphia Orchestra in his first studio release for a major label since 1997; their Stravinsky (The Rite of Spring)-Stokowski (transcriptions from Bach and Stravinsky) knows a huge success. With the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, he records theMendelssohn Symphonies 1-5 and the Complete Schumann Symphonies cycle; with the Rotterdams Philharmonisch Orkest, a Collection box ; with Daniil Trifonov and the Philadelphia Ochestra, two CDs including Rachmaninoff's 4 Piano Concertos. The DG discography also includes, among others, Tchaikovsky with Lisa Batiashvili and the Rotterdams Philharnisch Orkest and Visions of Prokofiev with Lisa Batiashvili and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. Following live performances of Leonard Bernstein's Mass, Yannick conducts the Philadelphia Orchestra and all the singers in a recording released in March 2018. With the Orchestre Métropolitain and Atma Classique in Montreal, with whom he began to record in 2000, a special box is released with the **Complete Bruckner Symphonies **recorded along the years. Many more recordings are available under various labels: with the Rotterdam Philharmonic (EMI Classics, BIS); the London Philharmonic (LPO label); the Orchestre Métropolitain of Montréal (ATMA Classique); Berliner Philharmoniker (Own Label);etc.

Credit: Chris Lee and the Philadelphia Orchestra

Yannick 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. By the time he made his European debut in 2004, he had already founded his own professional orchestra and vocal ensemble, La Chapelle de Montréal, going on to conduct all the major ensembles in Canada. His honours include Musical America’s Artist of the Year (2016), Eco Klassik’s Conductor of the year (2014), and the following Awards: Virginia-Parker (2000); Royal Philharmonic Society (2009); National Arts Centre (2010); Denise-Pelletier (2015); Medal of Honor of the Quebec National Assembly (2015); Oskar Morawetz (2017). He holds six honorary doctorates from the Université du Québec à Montréal (2011), Curtis Institute in Philadelphia (2014), Westminster Choir College of Rider University in Princeton (2015), McGill University in Montreal (2017), Université de Montréal (2017); University of Pennsylvania (2018). He was appointed a Companion of the Order of Canada (2012), Companion ot the Order of Arts and Letters of Québec (2015), Officer of the Order of Québec (2015), Officer of the Order of Montreal (2017) and Fellow of the Royal Conservatory of Music (2020).

Yannick-Nezet Séguin

Credit: Chris Lee and the Philadelphia Orchestra



March 6 — Born in Montreal (Ahuntsic neighbourhood).


Artistic direction, Chœur polyphonique de Montréal (Montreal Cathedral).


  • Creation of the Chapelle de Montréal, professional vocal and instrumental ensemble.
  • Artistic Director of the Chœur de Laval.
  • Creation of the Ensemble Orchestral de Montréal.
  • First concert with a large orchestra: Ensemble Orchestral and Chœur de Laval.


Five first prizes from the Conservatoire de musique du Québec à Montréal.


Several notable and significant encounters with Maestro Carlo Maria Giulini.


  • Assistant conductor and choir master at the Opéra de Montréal.
  • First concert as guest conductor at the Orchestre Métropolitain (Montreal).


  • Prix Opus “Revelation of the Year”.
  • “Person of the week”, La Presse.
  • Guest conductor at the Montreal Symphony Orchestra for a youth concert.


  • Artistic Director and Chief conductor of the Orchestre Métropolitain (Montréal).
  • Virginia Parker Prize from the Canada Council for the Arts.
  • First opera conducted in Montreal: Lakmé, Delibes, concert version.
  • 100th performance (concert or opera) (October 19).


First concert conducted outside of Québec with the CBC Radio Orchestra (Vancouver).


  • Start of collaboration with Atma Classique (La Strada, Nino Rota).
  • Chief Guest Conductor at the Victoria Symphony.
  • Start of collaboration with Askonas Holt agency.


European debut with the Orchestre national du Capitole de Toulouse.


  • 500th performance (October 29).


  • First concert as Guest Conductor in the United States, with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.
  • First concert as Guest Conductor with the Sächsische Staatskapelle, Dresden.
  • First concert as Guest Conductor with the Rotterdams Philharmonisch Orkest.


First concert as Guest Conductor with the London Philharmonic Orchestra.


  • Debut at the Salzburg Festival (Roméo and Juliette, Gounod).
  • First concert as Guest Conductor with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.
  • First concert as Guest Conductor with the Philadelphia Orchestra.
  • Chief Guest Conductor at the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
  • Chief Conductor at the Rotterdams Philharmonisch Orkest.


  • Debut at the Metropolitan Opera, New York (Carmen, Bizet, 6 performances).
  • Award from the Royal Philharmonic Society, London, in the Young Artist category.


  • Governor General's Performing Arts Awards.
  • First concert as Guest Conductor with the Wiener Philharmoniker.
  • First concert as Guest Conductor with the Berliner Philharmoniker.
  • 1000th performance (October 10).


  • First concert as Guest Conductor with the Bayerischer Rundfunk Orchester (Munich).
  • Denise-Pelletier Award.
  • Honorary doctorate (Université du Québec à Montréal)
  • Person of the Year (Arts category), La Presse/Radio-Canada.
  • First opera conducted at La Scala, Milan (Roméo and Juliette, Gounod)


  • Music Director at the Philadelphia Orchestra.
  • First concert conducted at Carnegie Hall (Verdi’s Requiem with the Philadelphia Orchestra).
  • Companion of the Order of Canada.
  • First opera conducted at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London (Dvoràk’s Rusalka).
  • Long-term collaboration agreement with Deutsche Grammophon.


2013-2016 — Conductor-in-residence at the Konzerthaus, Dortmund.


  • Prix Opus for best outreach outside Quebec.
  • Honorary doctorate (Curtis Institute, Philadelphia)
  • Echo Klassik Award of Conductor of the year, Stravinsky/Stokowski recording.
  • Name appears in the proper names edition of the Petit Robert dictionary.
  • 1500th performance (December 13).


  • Honorary doctorate (Westminster Choir College, Rider University, Princeton)
  • Companion, Arts and Letters of Québec.
  • Officer of the National Order of Quebec.
  • Québec National Assembly Medal.
  • Artist of the Year 2016 (Musical America).


  • 1700th performance (May 31).
  • Appointed as Musical Director of the Metropolitan Opera (New York).
  • Honorary Member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.


  • Music Director designate of the Metropolitan Opera (New York).
  • Honorary doctorate (Mc Gill University (Montreal))
  • Honorary doctorate (University of Montréal)
  • Officer of the Order of Montreal
  • Oskar Morawetz Award (Council of Arts, Ontario)
  • First European tour with the Orchestre Métropolitain (Montréal).


  • Honorary doctorate (University of Pennsylvania)
  • Musical Director of the Metropolitan Opera (New York).
  • Exclusive contract with Deutsche Grmmophon.


  • First American tour of the Orchestre Métropolitain.
  • Perpectives Artist 2019-2020 at Carnegie Hall.
  • Signature of an unlimited contract "for life" as Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Orchestre Métropolitain of Montréal


  • Three Opus Prizes from the Conseil Québécois de la musique.
  • Honorary member of the Royal Conservatory of Music for the major impact of his contribution on society.
  • Entry into the Petit Larousse 2021.
  • Rubies Prize offered by Opera Canada for its significant contribution to the world of opera.
  • Betty-Webster Prize in homage to a remarkable musician, visionary and humanitarian.
  • Commitment as a teacher at Star Académie.


  • Opus Prize of Artistic Director of the year, from the Conseil Québécois de la musique, for his leadership, notably during the pandemic.
  • First Piano solo recording, INTROSPECTION, on Deutsche Grammophon Label.
  • Release of Patrick Delisle-Crevier's book Raconte-moi Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Editions Petit homme.

Credit: François Goupil and the Orchestre Métropolitain

" C'est un très grand maître "

Edgar Fruitier, La Presse, 2016