Over the last quarter century, Manfred Honeck has firmly established himself as one of the world’s leading conductors, renowned for his distinctive interpretations and arrangements of a wide range of repertoire. For more than a decade, he has served as music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, continuing a legacy of music-making that is celebrated at home, abroad, and on recordings, including the Grammy Award–winning recording of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 and Barber’s Adagio for Strings (2018). Together, Mr. Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra have served as cultural ambassadors for the city as one of the most frequently toured American orchestras. In addition to performing at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, the orchestra regularly appears in major European music capitals and at festivals — including the Beethovenfest Bonn, BBC Proms, Musikfest Berlin, Lucerne Festival, Rheingau Musik Festival, Grafenegg Festival, and the Salzburg Festival — and continues a close relationship with Vienna’s Musikverein.
Born in Austria, Mr. Honeck received his musical training at Vienna’s Academy of Music and for many years was a member of the Vienna Philharmonic and the Vienna Staatsoper Orchestra. He began his conducting career as assistant to Claudio Abbado and was subsequently engaged by the Zurich Opera House, where he was bestowed with the prestigious European Conductor’s Award. Following early posts as one of three main conductors of Leipzig’s MDR Symphony Orchestra and as principal guest conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, he was appointed music director of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra in Stockholm. For several years he also served as principal guest conductor of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. From 2007 to 2011 he was music director of the Staatsoper Stuttgart. Operatic guest appearances include Semperoper Dresden, Royal Opera of Copenhagen, and Salzburg Festival.
As a guest conductor Mr. Honeck has worked with the Berlin Philharmonic, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Dresden Staatskapelle, Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestra dell’Accademia nazionale di Santa Cecilia, and Vienna Philharmonic. He is a regular guest with all the major American orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, The Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the San Francisco, Boston, and Chicago symphony orchestras.
Manfred Honeck has received honorary doctorates from several North American universities and was awarded the honorary title of Professor by the Austrian Federal President. An international jury of critics selected him as the International Classical Music Awards 2018 Artist of the Year.