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The Austrian conductor Manfred Honeck, who has been Music Director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra since 2008, began his career as a violist: he was a member of the Vienna State Opera Orchestra and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra for over ten years. He acquired his first experiences in conducting as an assistant to Claudio Abbado with the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra before being appointed Principal Conductor at Zurich Opera in 1991. Honeck worked with the MDR Symphony Orchestra in Leipzig from 1996 to 1999, and he served as Chief Conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra from 2000 to 2006; he was also Principal Guest Conductor of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra from 2008 to 2011 and from 2013 to 2016. Honeck has conducted many leading orchestras during his career, including the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, the Boston and Chicago Symphony Orchestras, the Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Among the ensembles he will guest conduct in the 2018-19 season are the Dresden Staatskapelle, the San Francisco Symphony, and the New York Philharmonic. Honeck was Music Director at the Stuttgart Staatsoper from 2007 to 2011. Additional opera productions have taken him to the Salzburg Festival, the Semperoper in Dresden, the Komische Oper in Berlin, and the Royal Danish Opera in Copenhagen. Honeck has received numerous awards for his recordings, including, in January 2018, a Grammy for his recording of Shostakovich’s Fifth; he was named Artist of the Year in the International Classical Music Awards in April. Manfred Honeck has received several honorary doctorates and was awarded the honorary title of Professor by the Austrian Federal President.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 23 August 1996 with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra in orchestral songs by Edvard Grieg and Mahler’s Fifth Symphony.