Stéphane Denève will become Principal Guest Conductor of The Philadelphia Orchestra from September 2014.
As principal guest conductor, Stéphane Denève will be a key member of the creative planning process, bringing a singular ability to conceive of, and work across, a spectrum of different concert formats and a keen interest in a breadth of repertoire. His close rapport with the musicians of the Orchestra and desire for bringing audiences nearer to the music has already led to the Orchestra’s recent TuneIN concert, where he gave informal illustrations from the piano, illuminating the music in concert with the Orchestra, and designed a valuable collaboration with an important Philadelphia cultural institution, Philadanco. He will spend multiple weeks each year with The Philadelphia Orchestra, conducting subscription, Family, and summer concerts. Since making his debut in 2007 Denève has been a familiar presence on the podium across many of the Orchestra’s venues. He has led more programs than any other guest conductor during that time period, in repertoire that has spanned more than 70 works, ranging from Classical through the contemporary including presentations with dance, film, and cirque performers. His three-year appointment as principal guest conductor extends through the 2016-17 season.
The Philadelphia Orchestra have now assembled a conducting team of like-minded collaborators, including Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Denève as principal guest conductor and Cristian Măcelaru as conductor-in-residence. Lio Kuokman has been named assistant conductor.
“During my seven-year history with the Orchestra I have treasured my close relationship with the musicians, the management, and the audiences of this precious organization,” says Denève. “I would like to thank all of them, and Yannick in particular, for welcoming me as a part of the family. I am thrilled at the prospect of exploring more repertoire together, of finding new ways to communicate and share the joy of music, and of becoming a part of the creative forces of this unique and forward-looking ensemble of talents. My wife and daughter love Philadelphia as much as I do, and together we are so excited about the start of the journey to come.”