Yan Pascal Tortelier
enjoys a distinguished career as guest conductor of the world’s most prestigious orchestras. He began his musical career as a violinist and, at fourteen, won first prize for violin at the Paris Conservatoire, making his soloist debut with the London Philharmonic Orchestra shortly afterward. Following general musical studies with Nadia Boulanger, Tortelier studied conducting with Franco Ferrara at the Accademia Chigiana in Siena.
This season, Yan Pascal Tortelier continues as Chief Conductor of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra with whom he has built a very special relationship in this role during recent seasons. Former positions have included Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Ulster Orchestra (1989-1992) and Principal Guest Conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (2005-2008). He was also Principal Conductor of the Sao Paulo Symphony Orchestra from 2009-2011. Following his outstanding work as Chief Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic between 1992 and 2003, including annual appearances at the BBC Proms and a very successful tour of the US to celebrate the orchestra’s 60th anniversary season, he was given the title of Conductor Emeritus and continues to work and record with the orchestra regularly. Yan Pascal Tortelier also holds the position of Principal Guest Conductor at the Royal Academy of Music in London.
Following a concert at Buenos Aires’ Teatro Colon in August 2018, Tortelier opens the Iceland Symphony Orchestra’s season, before returning to the US for concerts with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Other season highlights include return appearances with the New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Recent highlights have also included appearances in North America and Canada with the Pittsburgh, Dallas, Montreal, San Francisco, St. Louis, and Baltimore symphony orchestras.
Yan Pascal Tortelier has collaborated with major orchestras including the London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, St Petersburg Philharmonic, Oslo Philharmonic, Filarmonica della Scala Milan, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Minnesota Orchestra, and the Boston and Chicago symphony orchestras. Further afield he has collaborated with the Sydney and the Melbourne Symphony, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony, and Malaysian philharmonic orchestras.
Tortelier has enjoyed a long association with Chandos Records, resulting in an extensive catalogue of recordings, notably with the BBC Philharmonic and Ulster orchestras, and including award-winning cycles of the orchestral music of Debussy, Ravel (featuring his own orchestration of Ravel’s Piano Trio), Franck, Roussel, and Dutilleux. He has also conducted critically acclaimed discs of repertoire ranging from Hindemith and Kodaly to Lutoslawski, and Karlowicz. With the Sao Paolo Symphony Orchestra and Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, he has recorded the Ravel and Stravinsky piano concertos and Stravinsky’s Petroushka, plus a disc of works by Florent Schmitt. Tortelier’s most recent recording for Chandos is of Roussel’s Evocations with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and CBSO Chorus.