Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra
Since 1988 Yuri Temirkanov has been the Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, with whom he regularly undertakes major international tours and recordings.
After winning the prestigious All-Soviet National Conducting Competition in 1966, he was invited by Kiril Kondrashin to tour Europe and the USA with legendary violinist David Oistrakh and the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra.
Yuri Temirkanov made his debut with the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra (formerly the Leningrad Philharmonic) in early 1967. In 1968, he was appointed Principal Conductor of the Leningrad Symphony Orchestra, where he remained until his appointment as Music Director of the Kirov Opera and Ballet (now the Mariinsky Theatre) in 1976. He retained this position until 1988 and his productions of Eugene Onegin and Queen of Spades have become legendary in the theatre’s history.
Maestro Temirkanov has appeared with leading European orchestras including the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Dresden Staatskapelle, London Philharmonic, London Symphony, Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Accademia di Santa Cecilia, Rome and La Scala, Milan and others.
After making his London debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in 1977, he was appointed Principal Guest Conductor, to be named later in 1992 Principal Conductor, a position he held until 1998. From 1992 to 1997 he was also the Principal Guest Conductor of the Dresden Philharmonic and from 1998 to 2008 Principal Guest Conductor of the Danish National Radio Symphony Orchestra. A regular visitor to the USA, he conducts the major orchestras of New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, San Francisco and Los Angeles. He was the Music Director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra from 2000 till 2006, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Bolshoi Theatre until 2009. In 2010–2012, he was Music Director of Teatro Regio di Parma.
His numerous recordings include collaborations with the St Petersburg Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic and Danish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the Royal Philharmonic with whom he recorded the complete Stravinsky ballets and Tchaikovsky symphonies.
For ten days over the Christmas holiday, Maestro Temirkanov hosts the annual International Winter Festival Arts Square in St Petersburg, Russia. Unique in its concept, the festival gathers artists of the highest caliber. The focal point of the 14th Festival was the celebration of Temirkanov’s 75th birthday and the 25th anniversary of his leadership of the St Petersburg Philharmonic. The grand opening, conducted by Mariss Jansons and Nikolai Alexeev, was in honour of the maestro, with a grand gala concert featuring Yuri Bashmet, Paata Burchuladze, Elisso Virsaladze, Natalia Gutman, Denis Matsuev, Vadim Repin, Sayaka Shoji and Viktoria Yastrebova.
Maestro Temirkanov has received many distinguished awards in Russia and abroad. He has been awarded the Order “For Merit for the Country” of all the four degrees (1998, 2003, 2008, 2013). In 2003 and 2007, he received the Abbiati Prize for Best Conductor, and in 2003 was named Conductor of the Year in Italy. Recently, he was made an Honorary Accademician of Santa Cecilia. In 2012 he was awarded “The Commander of the Order of the Star of Italy” and in 2014 the Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli Prize.