Welsh National Opera has announced the appointment of their new Music Director: Czech conductor Tomáš Hanus who will take up the position from autumn 2016.
Tomáš Hanus is now recognised as one of the Czech Republic’s most exciting and important conductors. His varied career includes conducting at major European opera houses including Dresden Semperoper, Bavarian State Opera Munich, the Royal Danish Opera, the Norwegian National Opera and Teatro Real Madrid as well as conducting international symphony concerts around the world. His first engagements with WNO as Music Director will be concerts in the autumn and spring of 2016/17. He will make his operatic debut with the company conducting two productions in summer 2017 with a further two productions in autumn 2017. Hanus will also return for other concerts and special opera projects throughout the year.
Tomáš Hanus said: “I felt an immediate connection with WNO from the moment we first worked together. They have passion, creativity, talent and professionalism. I am looking forward to building a strong relationship both with the company and with the community and to bringing beautiful music to more and more people. It’s a great privilege for me to work with WNO and David Pountney.”
Carlo Rizzi will also take up the new role of Conductor Laureate with WNO with immediate effect. Rizzi has enjoyed a longstanding relationship with Welsh National Opera as well as a career of frequent appearances at the world’s most prestigious opera Houses inclouding Teatro alla Scala, Milan, Opéra national de Paris, Lyric Opera of Chicago and Metropolitan Opera, New York. A former Music Director of WNO from 1992 to 2001 and 2004 to 2008, Rizzi recently worked with the company conducting Rossini’s William Tell and Moses in Egypt last autumn. He is currently conducting WNO’s production of Bellini’s I puritani and will also return to WNO in summer next to conduct the world premiere of Iain Bell’s opera In Parenthesis.
Carlo Rizzi said: “I am honoured and happy to become Welsh National Opera’s Conductor Laureate. For me, this title recognises the achievements and advances we made together during my years as Music Director and also provides the basis for an on-going collaboration with a Company – particularly the orchestra and chorus – that I hold in high regard. I am anticipating a number of exciting future projects, starting with the new commission of Iain Bell’s In Parenthesis, and it will also be a pleasure to be part of the 70th anniversary season. I look forward to working alongside the new Music Director and wish him the same joy and satisfaction that I found and continue to find at WNO.”