Valery Gergiev is a vivid representative of the St. Petersburg conducting school. His debut at the Mariinsky (then Kirov) Theatre came in 1978 with Prokofiev’s War and Peace. In 1988 he was appointed music director of the Mariinsky Theatre, and in 1996 he became its artistic and general director.
With his arrival at the Mariinsky Theatre’s helm, it became a tradition to hold major festivals, marking various composer anniversaries. His efforts have led to revivals of Wagner’s operas. The Mariinsky Orchestra under Mr. Gergiev has scaled new heights, assimilating not only opera and ballet scores but also an expansive symphonic repertoire.
Under his direction, the Mariinsky Theatre has become a major theater and concert complex. In 2006 the Concert Hall was opened, followed in 2013 by the theater’s second stage (the Mariinsky-II) and, since January 2016, a branch in Vladivostok: the Primorsky Stage. The Mariinsky label, launched in 2009, has to date released more than 30 discs that have received great critical and public acclaim worldwide.
Mr. Gergiev has conducted in the world’s great opera houses and led world-renowned orchestras, such as World Orchestra for Peace (which he has directed since 1997); the New York, Berlin, Paris, Vienna, and Los Angeles philharmonic orchestras; the Chicago, Boston, and San Francisco symphony orchestras; The Cleveland Orchestra; and Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. From 1995 to 2008 he was principal conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic (of which he remains an honorary conductor), and from 2007 to 2015 he was principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra. Since the fall of 2015, he has also been chief conductor of the Munich Philharmonic.
Valery Gergiev is the founder and director of international festivals including the Stars of the White Nights (since 1993) and the Moscow Easter Festival (since 2002). Since 2011 he has directed the organizational committee of the International Tchaikovsky Competition. Mr. Gergiev’s musical and public activities have brought him acclaimed awards such as the Hero of Labour (2013), the Order of Alexander Nevsky (2016), the Russian Federation Ministry of Defence Arts and Culture Award (2017), and state awards from Armenia, Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, France, and Japan.
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