The Philadelphia OrchestraMore Info
The Philadelphia Orchestra is among the world's leading orchestras. Renowned for
its artistic excellence since its founding in 1900, the orchestra has inspired audiences
through thousands of live performances, recordings, and broadcasts in Philadelphia and
throughout the world.
With only seven music directors throughout more than a century of unswerving orchestral
distinction, the artistic heritage of The Philadelphia Orchestra is attributed to
extraordinary musicianship under the leadership and innovation of Fritz Scheel (1900-1907),
Carl Pohlig (1907-1912), Leopold Stokowski (1912-1941), Eugene Ormandy (1936-1980),
Riccardo Muti (1980-1992), Wolfgang Sawallisch (1993-2003), and Christoph Eschenbach
(2003-2008). After 30 years of a celebrated association with The Philadelphia Orchestra,
Charles Dutoit continues the tradition as Chief Conductor.
Since Mr. Dutoit's debut with the orchestra in July 1980, he has led hundreds of concerts
in Philadelphia, at Carnegie Hall, and on tour as artistic director of the orchestra's
summer concerts at the Mann Center, as artistic director and principal conductor of the
orchestra's summer residency at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, and now as Chief
Conductor. With the 2012-2013 season, the orchestra honors Mr. Dutoit by bestowing upon him
the title conductor laureate.
Yannick Nézet-Séguin assumed the title of Music Director Designate in June 2010,
immediately joining the orchestra's leadership team. He takes up the baton as The
Philadelphia Orchestra's next music director in 2012.
The Philadelphia Orchestra annually touches the lives of countless music lovers worldwide
through concerts, presentations, and recordings. Each year, the orchestra presents a
subscription season at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, education and community
partnership programs, and annual appearances at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center; it
also regularly tours throughout the world. Its summer schedule includes performances at the
Mann Center, free Neighborhood Concerts throughout greater Philadelphia, and residencies at
the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival and the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Please visit
philorch.org for more information.
In the 2010-2011 season, The Philadelphia Orchestra celebrates its 30-year artistic
collaboration with Charles Dutoit, who has held the title of Chief Conductor since 2008.
With the 2012-2013 season, the orchestra will honor Mr. Dutoit by bestowing upon him the
title of conductor laureate. Also Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Royal
Philharmonic Orchestra, Mr. Dutoit regularly collaborates with the world's pre-eminent
orchestras and soloists. He has recorded extensively for Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, EMI,
Philips, CBS, and Erato, and his more than 200 recordings have garnered more than 40 awards
From 1977 to 2002, Mr. Dutoit was artistic director of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra.
Between 1990 and 2010, he was artistic director and principal conductor of The Philadelphia
Orchestra's summer festival at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, and from 1991 to 2001,
he was music director of the Orchestre national de France. In 1996, he was appointed music
director of the NHK Symphony Orchestra; today he is Music Director Emeritus of that
ensemble. Mr. Dutoit has been artistic director of both the Pacific Music Festival Sapporo
and the Miyazaki International Music Festival in Japan, as well as the Canton International
Summer Music Academy in Guangzhou, China, which he founded in 2005. In summer 2009, he
became Music Director of the Verbier Festival Orchestra. While still in his early 20s, Mr.
Dutoit was invited by Herbert von Karajan to conduct the Vienna State Opera, and has since
conducted at Covent Garden, the Metropolitan Opera, the Deutsche Oper Berlin, and the
Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires.
In 1991, Mr. Dutoit was made an Honorary Citizen of the City of Philadelphia. In 1995, he
was named Grand Officier de l'Ordre national du Québec, and in 1996 Commandeur de l'Ordre
des Arts et des Lettres by the government of France. In 1998, he was invested as an
Honorary Officer of the Order of Canada, the country's highest award of merit.
Mr. Dutoit was born in Lausanne, Switzerland, and his extensive musical training included
violin, viola, piano, percussion, music history, and composition in Geneva, Siena, Venice,
and Boston. A globetrotter motivated by his passion for history and archaeology, political
science, art, and architecture, Mr. Dutoit has traveled all the nations of the world.