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.

click for more

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

Beethoven: Symphony no.4 (excerpt)
NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra, April 2018
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

January - August 2019
Date & Time Venue Details
Saturday, 12th January
18:00
NFM Red Hall
Wrocław, Poland

WAGNER: Siegfried Idyll, WWV103
BRUCKNER: Adagio from String Quintet
MAHLER: Adagietto from Symphony no.5
STRAUSS, RICHARD: Metamorphosen for 23 solo strings

NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra

harp: Malwina Lipiec

Friday, 18th January
20:30
Auditorio Manuel de Falla
Granada, Spain

GRIEG: Våren (Last Spring) op.34 no.2
SIBELIUS: Six Humoresques, for violin & orchestra op. 87 & 89
SWENSEN: Sinfonietta
SVENDSEN: Romance in G major for Violin and Strings, op.26
NIELSEN: Four Movements for Orchestra (1888) orchestrated by J.Swensen

Orquesta Ciudad de Granada

Saturday, 19th January
20:30
Auditorio Manuel de Falla
Granada, Spain

GRIEG: Våren (Last Spring) op.34 no.2
SIBELIUS: Six Humoresques, for violin & orchestra op. 87 & 89
SWENSEN: Sinfonietta
SVENDSEN: Romance in G major for Violin and Strings, op.26
NIELSEN: Four Movements for Orchestra (1888) orchestrated by J.Swensen

Orquesta Ciudad de Granada

Friday, 15th February
19:30
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Glasgow, UK

STRAVINSKY: Symphonies of Wind Instruments
BOYLE, Rory: Muckle Flugga
MAHLER: Das Lied von der Erde

RCS Symphony Orchestra

Saturday, 23rd February
18:00
NFM Red Hall
Wrocław, Poland

TIPPETT: Fantasia Concertante on a theme by Corelli
MACMILLAN: Saxophone Concerto
BRIDGE: Meditation for Saxophone and String Orchestra (arr. J.Swensen)
BRITTEN: Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge, op.10

NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra

saxophone: Lukasz Dyczko

Thursday, 14th March
19:30
Usher Hall
Edinburgh, UK

BEETHOVEN: Overture ‘Coriolan’ op.62
BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto no.2 in B flat major, op.19
Interval
SIBELIUS: Symphony no. 6 in D minor, op. 104
SIBELIUS: Symphony no.7 in C major, op.105

Scottish Chamber Orchestra

Friday, 15th March
19:30
City Halls
Glasgow, UK

BEETHOVEN: Overture ‘Coriolan’ op.62
BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto no.2 in B flat major, op.19
SIBELIUS: Symphony no. 6 in D minor, op. 104
SIBELIUS: Symphony no.7 in C major, op.105

Scottish Chamber Orchestra

Friday, 22nd March
18:30
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Glasgow, UK

BARTOK: Quartet no.2, op.17

with students of the RCS

Friday, 5th April
20:00
Centre in the Square
Kitchener, ON

SGROI, Laura: We’re Not Done Drumming, co-commission with SNS
MOZART: Sinfonia Concertante in Eb Major for four winds, K. 297b
HAYDN: Symphony No.101 in D major ‘The Clock’

Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra

narrator: Rebecca Thomas

oboe: James Mason

clarinet: Ross Edwards

bassoon: Ian Hopkin

horn: Katherine Robertson

Saturday, 6th April
20:00
Centre in the Square
Kitchener, ON

SGROI, Laura: We’re Not Done Drumming, co-commission with SNS
MOZART: Sinfonia Concertante in Eb Major for four winds, K. 297b
HAYDN: Symphony No.101 in D major ‘The Clock’

Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra

narrator: Rebecca Thomas

oboe: James Mason

clarinet: Ross Edwards

bassoon: Ian Hopkin

horn: Katherine Robertson

Saturday, 27th April
20:00
La Halle aux Grains
Toulouse, France

MAHLER: Adagio from Symphony no.10
MAHLER: Das Lied von der Erde

Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse

mezzo-soprano: Janina Baechle

tenor: Christian Elsner

Friday, 10th May
18:00
Oratorium Marianum
Wrocław, Poland

BRITTEN: Simple Symphony op.4
SWENSEN: Sinfonietta
PENDERECKI: Per Slava (1986) – for solo cello
HAYDN: Cello Concerto no.1 in C major, Hob.VIIb/1

NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra

cello: Jonathan Swensen

Monday, 20th May
13:00
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Glasgow, UK

DEBUSSY: Quartet in G Minor, op.10

with students of the RCS

Friday, 24th May
13:00
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Glasgow, UK

SCHUMANN: Piano Quintet in E flat major, op.44

violin: Abigail Young

viola: Lauren Hall

cello: Madelyn Kowalski

piano: Jeffrey Sharkey

Saturday, 1st June
18:00
Casa da Música
Porto, Portugal

CHÁVEZ: Symphony no.2, ‘Sinfonía india’
GINASTERA: Variaciones Concertantes op. 23
BERNSTEIN: Symphony no.2, ‘The Age of Anxiety’

Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música

piano: Roman Rabinovich

Sunday, 30th June
17:00
The Bowhouse
St Monans, UK

WAGNER: Siegfried Idyll, WWV103
MOZART: Sinfonia Concertante in Eb Major fo four winds, K. 297b
MENDELSSOHN: Symphony no.3 in A minor, op.56, ‘Scottish’

Scottish Chamber Orchestra

violin: Benjamin Baker

viola: Diyang Mei

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