"SHEER FORCE AND MAGNETISM"
Principal Guest Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra as well as Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra Ottawa and Artistic Partner of the Munich Chamber Orchestra, John Storgårds has a dual career as a conductor and violin virtuoso and is widely recognised for his creative flair for programming. He is also Artistic Director of the Lapland Chamber Orchestra.
Storgårds appears with such orchestras as WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Bamberger Symphoniker, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI Torino, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, BBC Symphony, CBSO, all the major Nordic orchestras including Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra where he was Chief Conductor 2008-2015. Further afield, he appears with Sydney, Melbourne, New Zealand and NHK Symphonies as well as Boston, St Louis, Toronto, Vancouver Symphonies, Cleveland Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. Soloists with whom he collaborates include Yefim Bronfman, Colin Currie, Sol Gabetta, Håkan Hardenberger, Kari Kriikku, Dejan Lazic, Karita Mattila, Gil Shaham, Baiba Skride, Christian Tetzlaff, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Frank Peter Zimmermann.
His repertoire includes all symphonies by Sibelius, Nielsen, Bruckner, Brahms, Beethoven and Schumann, and with Helsinki Philharmonic he has undertaken a full cycle of all symphonies by Schubert. With the Lapland Chamber Orchestra he gave a historical cycle of all 54 symphonies by Mozart (including the unnumbered works). Storgårds has given numerous premieres including Sibelius’ Late Fragments, Schumann’s only opera ‘Genoveva’ as well as works by contemporary composers such as Kaija Saariaho, Brett Dean, Per Nørgård and Pēteris Vasks many of whom have dedicated their works to him. In opera, Storgårds conducted the Finnish premiere of Haydn’s Orlando Paladino at the Finnish National Opera and most recently a new production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni at the Savonlinna Opera Festival. Storgårds conducted most Mozart operas and major titles by Strauss and Verdi. As part of his imaginative programming with Lapland Chamber Orchestra, the group regularly performs opera – most recently Walton’s The Bear.
Highlights of this season include Storgårds’ return to the BBC Proms with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra. He will give debut appearances with the Gewandhausorchester zu Leipzig, Orchestre National de France and Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin for a concert at the Philharmonie.
Storgårds’ vast discography include highly acclaimed cycles of Sibelius’s and Nielsen’s symphonies for Chandos Records. Other successes have included a disc of works by Einojuhani Rautavaara, receiving a Grammy nomination and a Gramophone Award 2012. His recording of Pēteris Vasks’ Second Symphony and Violin Concerto, also featuring him as soloist, won the Cannes Classical Disc of the Year Award in 2004. Storgårds recording of concertos for theremin and horn by Kalevi Aho received the distinguished ECHO Klassik award in December 2015.
Storgårds studied violin with Chaim Taub and subsequently became concert master of the Swe-dish Radio Symphony Orchestra under Esa-Pekka Salonen, before studying conducting with Jorma Panula and Eri Klas. He received the Finnish State Prize and the Pro Finlandia Prize 2012.