Thierry Fischer has been Music Director of the Utah Symphony since 2009 and will finish his final term in Summer 2022, becoming Music Director Emeritus. He has been Principal Guest of the Seoul Philharmonic since 2017 (contract extended to the end of 2020). In March 2020 he begins a new position as Music Director of the São Paulo Symphony.
In Utah he has led annual single composer cycles including Mahler, Ives and Nielsen, and released acclaimed performances of Mahler’s symphonies 1 and 8 on Reference Records, the latter with the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir. 2019 saw the first release of a Saint-Saens symphony cycle on Hyperion as part of an ongoing collaboration (also to excellent reviews). He has conducted the orchestra in Utah’s five national parks and forged outreach links in Haiti. In celebration of its 75th anniversary season in 2016, he brought the orchestra to Carnegie Hall for the first time in 40 years, and released a CD of newly commissioned works by Nico Muhly, Andrew Norman, and Augusta Read Thomas. In his capacity as Principal Guest Conductor of the Seoul Philharmonic, he visits Seoul 4 times a season, and in December 2018 toured to Paris, Luzern and Geneva with the orchestra.
Other highlights of 18/19 have included the South American premiere of Manoury’s flute concerto with Pahud and the São Paulo Symphony, and several staged projects – Zender’s Winterreise in Strasbourg, Zauberfloete at Utah Opera, and Candide in Utah and Seoul. Guesting highlights included return visits to the Bergen Philharmonic and to the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment (on tour and at the Royal Festival Hall). In recent seasons he has also conducted the Boston, Atlanta, Cincinnati and Detroit Symphonies and Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra (New York), Royal Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, Oslo Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Maggio Musicale Firenze, Salzburg Mozarteumorchester and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. He continues to enjoy the collaborative aspect of working with smaller ensembles such as the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Scottish, Swedish and Munich chamber orchestras, London Sinfonietta and Ensemble Intercontemporain. He is committed to contemporary music and has performed and commissioned many world premieres.
Whilst Principal Conductor of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales 2006-2012 Fischer appeared every year at the BBC Proms, toured internationally, and recorded for Hyperion, Signum and Orfeo, winning the ICMA Award in 2012 for Frank Martin’s Der Sturm on Hyperion with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. In 2014 he released a Beethoven disc with the London Philharmonic on the Aparte label.
Fischer started out as Principal Flute in Hamburg and at the Zurich Opera. His conducting career began in his 30s when he replaced an ailing colleague, subsequently directing his first few concerts with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe where he was Principal Flute under Claudio Abbado. He spent his apprentice years in Holland, and became Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Ulster Orchestra 2001-2006. He was Chief Conductor of the Nagoya Philharmonic 2008-2011, making his Suntory Hall debut in Tokyo in May 2010, and is now Honorary Guest Conductor.
LA Times, January 2018
The playing was on the highest quality I'd heard from it in years
Financial Times, March 2018
A mesmerising performance
Gramophone Magazine, January 2018
Fischer is clearly a Mahlerian to contend with, full of ideas and the wherewithal to execute them…The orchestra have never sounded better…This Mahler Eighth may not replace your favourite, be it by Horenstein or Stokowski, Bernstein or Solti, Sinopoli or Abbado, but it will surely complement any of them in its grand trajectory, intelligence, clarity and beautiful sound