Marek Janowski

Chief Conductor and Artistic Director

Marek Janowski © Andreas Pein

Marek Janowski © Andreas Pein

Marek Janowski came to the Dresden Philharmonic for the first time as Chief conductor from 2001 to 2003. Already at this time, he impressed by offering unusual and ambitious programmes. Marek Janowski became the Chief conductor and Artistic director of the Dresden Philharmonic for the second time in the 2019-20 concert season.

Born in 1939 in Warsaw, raised and educated in Germany, Marek Janowski can look back on an extensive and successful career both as opera conductor and as head of major concert orchestras. His artistic path led him, after his years as assistant and chief conductor in Aachen, Cologne, Düsseldorf and Hamburg, to Freiburg i. Br. and Dortmund as general music director. From the Metropolitan Opera New York and the Bavarian State Opera Munich, from Chicago, San Francisco, Hamburg, Vienna, Berlin to Paris, he was a regular guest in the major international opera houses since the late 1970s.

On the concert circuit, on which he has concentrated since the late 1990s, he continues the great German conducting tradition. He was Chief conductor of the Rundfunk-Sinfonie­orchester Berlin (RSB) from 2002 to 2016. Prior to that and sometimes simultaneously, he served, inter alia, as the Music director of the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (2005–2012), of the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo (2000–2005) and of the Orchestre Philhar­monique de Radio France (1984–2000), which he developed into France’s top orchestra. In addition, he headed up the Gürzenich Orchestra in Cologne for several years (1986–1990).

Around the world, Marek Janowski is considered an outstanding Beethoven, Schumann, Brahms, Bruckner and Strauss conductor, as well as an expert in the French repertoire. More than 50 recordings, awarded in most cases international prizes – including several complete opera recordings and complete symphonic cycles – have been contributing for more than 35 years to making Marek Janowski’s particular skills as a conductor internationally known.

One special focus for him is Richard Wagner’s ten operas and music dramas, which he performed in concert performances with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, the Rund­funk­chor Berlin and international soloists in the Philhar­monie Berlin between 2010 and 2013.  All concerts were released on CD by Pentatone in cooperation with Deutschland­radio. For Wagner, Marek Janowski returned once again to an opera house, conducting the “Ring” at the Bayreuth Festival in 2016 and 2017. In the years 1980 to 1983 he had already recorded this cycle with the Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden. From 2014 to 2017, he was invited by the NHK Symphony (Japan’s most important orchestra) to Tokyo to conduct concert performan­ces of Wagner’s “Ring” tetralogy.

A number of recordings with Maestro Janowski conducting the Dresden Philharmonic have already been made, such as the one-act operas “Cavalleria rusticana” and “Il Tabarro” by Mascagni and Puccini respectively, as well as Beethoven’s “Fidelio”, also recorded by the Pentatone label.