For 18 years, Franz Welser-Möst has shaped an unmistakable sound culture as musical director of The Cleveland Orchestra. Under his leadership, the orchestra has been repeatedly praised by international critics for its musical excellence. Through innovative projects and cooperations, young audiences have been continuously approached and consulted; as a result of these initiatives, 20 percent of all Cleveland Orchestra concertgoers are now under 25 years old. Mr. Welser-Möst has brought numerous world premieres and opera productions to Severance Hall. In addition to orchestral residencies in the United States, Europe, and China, he and The Cleveland Orchestra are regular guests at all the major international festivals.
As a guest conductor, Mr. Welser-Möst enjoys a particularly close and productive artistic partnership with the Vienna Philharmonic. He has twice appeared on the podium for its celebrated New Year’s Concert, and he regularly conducts the orchestra in subscription concerts at the Musikverein, as well as on tours in Japan, China, Australia, and the US. Mr. Welser-Möst and the Vienna Philharmonic have also performed together at historical memorial concerts in Sarajevo and Versailles.
He is also a regular guest at the Salzburg Festival, where he has set new standards in interpretation as an opera conductor with recent performances including Dvořák’s Rusalka, Richard Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier, The Love of Danae, and Salome, as well as Beethoven’s Fidelio and Aribert Reimann’s Lear. Due to the success of the production of Salome, it will be brought back to the festival in 2019, as Der Rosenkavalier was after its first summer performances with Mr. Welser-Möst at the festival in 2014.
Franz Welser-Möst has been the recipient of numerous major honors and awards. He is an honorary member of Vienna’s Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde and recipient of the Vienna Philharmonic’s Honorary Ring, the Bruckner Society of America’s Kilenyi Medal, and the Kennedy Center’s Gold Medal in the Arts.
His discography is extensive, with numerous CDs and DVDs having been awarded major international prizes. Recent recordings with The Cleveland Orchestra have included the symphonies of Brahms and Bruckner. His Salzburg opera productions, including Der Rosenkavalier, which was awarded a number of international prizes, have been released internationally on DVD by Unitel.
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