Joseph Swensen

Joseph Swensen – conductor

  • Artistic Director, NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra, Wrocław
  • Conductor Emeritus, Scottish Chamber Orchestra (Principal Conductor 1996-2005)
  • Principal Guest Conductor, Orquesta Ciudad de Granada

Joseph Swensen is Artistic Director of the NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra (Wroclaw), Conductor Emeritus of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Principal Guest Conductor of the Orquesta Ciudad de Granada. He has previously served as Principal Guest Conductor & Artistic Adviser of the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris (2009-2012), Principal Conductor of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra (1996-2005) and Principal Conductor of Malmö Opera (2005-2011). A sought-after pedagogue, Joseph Swensen teaches conducting, violin and chamber music at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow.

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Recognized for forging solid bonds with orchestras, this season will also see Swensen returning to guest conduct his closest partners, the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse and Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música, as well as Estonian National Symphony Orchestra and the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony. In 2018 he returned to the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and made his debut with Orquesta Sinfónica de Navarra.

During his nine-year tenure with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Swensen and the orchestra toured extensively in the US, UK, Europe and the Far East. They performed together at the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York, Tanglewood and Ravinia Festivals, the BBC Proms, the Barbican and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw. With the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, Swensen appeared at the “Festival de Radio France” in Montpellier and “La Folle Journée” at Nantes and Tokyo. As Principal Conductor of the Malmö Opera in Sweden, Swensen conducted highly acclaimed productions, notably rarely staged ones such as Macbeth, Vanessa, The Dialogues of the Carmelites and La Fanciulla del West, alongside Salome, La Bohème, La Traviata and Madame Butterfly, among others.

Before launching his conducting career in the mid-1990s, Swensen enjoyed a highly successful career as a violin soloist appearing with the world’s major orchestras and conductors. As an exclusive recording artist with BMG Classics he recorded the Beethoven violin concerto with André Prévin and the Royal Philharmonic and the Sibelius violin concerto with Jukka Pekka Saraste and the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra. The violinist and conductor naturally meet in the art of play-direct. With a special interest in exploring and developing this art, Swensen has extended the repertoire far beyond the classical period, directing from the violin concertos by composers such as Brahms, Barber and Prokofiev. His series of recordings for Linn Records featuring Brahms, Mendelssohn and Prokofiev’s second concerto, with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra were internationally acclaimed. With the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, Swensen created the first ‘Paris Play-Direct Academy’ in May 2011.

A multifaceted musician, as a composer Swensen’s works include Mantram (1998) for string orchestra, Latif (1999) for solo cello with chamber ensemble, Shizue (2001) for solo shakuhachi and orchestra, and the Sinfonia-Concertante for Horn and Orchestra (The Fire and the Rose) (2008). Swensen’s Sinfonia in B (2007), an orchestration of the rarely performed 1854 version of Brahms’ Trio Op. 8, has been recorded for Signum Records.

Joseph and Victoria Swensen present year-round workshops and offer residencies for chamber-music, conducting and instrumental study at their 250 -year old, 15 room farm-house in Vermont.

An American of Norwegian and Japanese descent, Joseph Swensen was born in Hoboken, New Jersey and grew up in Harlem, New York City.

July 2018

For full press pack, contact
Aude-Marie Auphan (Artist Manager)

Contact:
Victoria Rowsell (Managing Director)
Aude-Marie Auphan (Artist Manager)

Videos

Bruckner: Symphony no.7 (excerpt)
Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, October 2015
Tchaikovsky Symphony no.5, rehearsal
London Philharmonic Orchestra, March 2014

Concert Dates

September - December 2018
Date & Time Venue Details
Saturday, 29 September
18:00
The Main Hall
NFM Wrocław, Poland

MOZART : Symphony no.29 in A major, K.201/186a
MOZART : Coronation Mass in C major, K.317
MOZART : Piano Concerto no.24 in C minor, K.491

NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra

Thursday, 25 October
19:30
The Queen’s Hall
Edinburgh, UK

GRIEG : Suite op.40 ‘From Holberg’s Time’
McLEOD : Viola Concerto, ‘Nordic Fire’
BEETHOVEN : String Quartet no.14 in C sharp minor, op.131

Scottish Chamber Orchestra

viola: Jane Atkins

Friday, 26 October
19:30
The Queen’s Hall
Edinburgh, UK

GRIEG : Suite op.40 ‘From Holberg’s Time’
McLEOD : Viola Concerto, ‘Nordic Fire’
BEETHOVEN : String Quartet no.14 in C sharp minor, op.131

Scottish Chamber Orchestra

viola: Jane Atkins

Friday, 16 November
21:00
Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música
Porto, Portugal

MOZART : Overture to Don Giovanni
MOZART : Symphony no. 38 in D major, K.504 ‘Prague’
DVORAK : Symphony no. 7 in D minor, op.70

Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música

Sunday, 18 November
12:00
Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música
Porto, Portugal

DVORAK : Symphony no. 7 in D minor, op.70

Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música

Saturday, 1 December
18:00
The Red Hall

DEBUSSY : ‘Beau Soir’ arr. by J. Swensen
DEBUSSY : Quartet in G Minor, op.10, arr. for the string orchestra by J. Swensen
TCHAIKOVSKY : Meditation, op.42. no.1, arr. for solo violin and strings by J. Swensen
TCHAIKOVSKY : Serenade for String Orchestra, op.48

NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra

Gallery

Links

Useful Links

Official website
www.josephswensen.com

CM Artists (violin representation in North America, Linda Marder)
www.cmartists.com

Scottish Chamber Orchestra
www.sco.org.uk

Signum Records
www.signumrecords.com

Linn Records
www.linnrecords.com

Publisher
vj@vjpublishing.com