Andris Nelsons is the newly appointed Music Director of City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. While still in the early stages of an international career, this achievement in particular has already distinguished his name as one of the most sought-after young conductors today.
Few other conductors of his generation have received so many orchestral re-invitations. These have lately included the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Tonhalle-Orchester Zuerich, NDR-Sinfonieorchester, WDR Sinfonieorchester Koeln, Oslo Philharmonic and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra. Important appearances in the last season included Concertgebouworkest, Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and Cleveland Symphony. This season, he conducts the Orchestre National de France and Pittsburgh Symphony for the first time.
Nelsons opens his first season in Birmingham with Berlioz Symphony Fantastique and Bartok Miraculous Mandarin. In October, he presents La Boheme in a concert performance and his first tour with the orchestra, in March 2010, includes dates at the Lucerne Festival and Berliner Festspiele.
In June 2008, Andris Nelsons made his debut at Vienna State Opera with Pique Dame, where he will return in November 2008 with Tosca and Madame Butterfly. Further operatic debuts include Turandot at the Staatsoper Berlin in 2008, his Royal Opera House Covent Garden debut in 2009/2010 and, in summer 2010, he will appear at Bayreuther Festspiele as Musical Director for Lohengrin, in a new production directed by Hans Neuenfels. In spring 2007, he made his debut at Deutsche Oper Berlin, where he will return in spring 2009 with Eugene Onegin. From 2003-2007 Andris Nelsons was Music Director of the Latvian National Opera, where productions latterly included Aida, Madame Butterfly and Die Walkuere.
Andris Nelsons' first commercial recording was released by ORFEO Records at the end of 2006, a disc of Shostakovich's two violin concertos with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and violinist Arabella Steinbacher. The disc received the Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik in January 2007. A Sony recording of Tchaikovsky works, with City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and violinist Baiba Skride, was released in 2007, to great acclaim.
Born in Riga in 1978 into a family of musicians, Andris Nelsons began his career in music as a trumpeter in the Latvian National Opera Orchestra and has also won many prizes for his singing. He was recipient of the prestigious Latvian Grand Music Award for outstanding achievement in music in 2001 and, after graduating in the same year, he went to St. Petersburg to study conducting with Professor Alexander Titov. He has been studying privately with Mariss Jansons since 2002 and remains Principal Conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie in Herford, Germany for one more season.