Alan Gilbert, conductor & viola
New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert, The Yoko Nagae Ceschina Chair, began his tenure in September 2009, launching what New York magazine called “a fresh future for the Philharmonic.” His creative approach to programming combines works in fresh and innovative ways, and he has developed artistic partnerships, including the positions of The Marie-Josée Kravis Composer-in-Residence and The Mary and James G. Wallach Artist-in-Residence; an annual three-week festival; and CONTACT!, the new-music series. The first native New Yorker to hold the post, he has sought to make the Orchestra a point of civic pride for the city as well as for the country.
During the 2011–12 season Alan Gilbert conducts world premieres, three Mahler symphonies, a residency at London’s Barbican Centre, tours to Europe and California, and a season-concluding musical exploration of space that features Stockhausen’s theatrical immersion, Gruppen, to be given at the Park Avenue Armory. He also made his Philharmonic debut as soloist when he joined Frank Peter Zimmermann in J.S. Bach’s Concerto for Two Violins in October 2011. Highlights of the previous season included two tours of European music capitals, Carnegie Hall’s 120th Anniversary Concert, and an acclaimed production of Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen, hailed by The Washington Post as “another victory,” building on 2010’s wildly successful staging of Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre, which The New York Times called “an instant Philharmonic milestone.” Other highlights of Mr. Gilbert’s inaugural season included the Asian Horizons tour in October 2009, which included the Orchestra’s Vietnam debut at the historic Hanoi Opera House; the EUROPE / WINTER 2010 tour; world premieres; and chamber performances as violinist and violist with Philharmonic musicians.
In September 2011 Alan Gilbert became Director of Conducting and Orchestral Studies at The Juilliard School, where he is also the first to hold the William Schuman Chair in Musical Studies. He is Conductor Laureate of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and Principal Guest Conductor of Hamburg’s NDR Symphony Orchestra; he regularly conducts leading orchestras in the U.S. and abroad. His 2011–12 season engagements include appearances with the Munich Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Royal Swedish Opera, and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic.
Alan Gilbert made his acclaimed Metropolitan Opera debut in November 2008 leading John Adams’s Doctor Atomic. His recordings have been nominated for Grammy Awards, and his recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 9 received top honors from the Chicago Tribune and Gramophone magazine. Mr. Gilbert studied at Harvard University, The Curtis Institute of Music, and The Juilliard School, and served as the assistant conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra (1995–97). In May 2010 he received an Honorary Doctor of Music from The Curtis Institute of Music.