“The BBC SO have found a star in the making: let’s hope we hear more of him.”
Kazuki Yamada is Principal Conductor and Artistic Director Designate of Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo, a post that begins in the 2016/2017 season. He additionally holds the title of Principal Guest Conductor of Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, since his sensational debut with the orchestra in 2010, which was one of his first appearances in Europe. In Japan, he holds further titles of Principal Conductor of Japan Philharmonic, Music Partner with both Sendai Philharmonic and Ensemble Orchestral Kanazawa, and Music Director of Yokohama Sinfonietta, an ensemble he founded whilst still a student.
Yamada appears regularly as a guest with such orchestras as Orchestre de Paris, Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, St Petersburg Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, Helsinki Philharmonic, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Gothenburg Symphony, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI, Utah Symphony and Tonkünstler-Orchester at the Vienna Musikverein. Soloists with whom he is working include Emmanuel Ax, Boris Berezovsky, Håkan Hardenberger, Nobuko Imai, Daishin Kashimoto, Daniel Müller-Schott, Xavier de Maistre, Steven Osborne, Vadim Repin, Baiba Skride, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Simon Trpčeski and Alexander Kniazev.
In the 2015/16 season, Kazuki Yamada returns to the Philharmonia Orchestra, Orchestre National de France, Tonkünstler-Orchester, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, NHK Symphony, Malaysian Philharmonic and City of Birmingham Symphony, whom he conducts on tour in Japan in spring 2016. Debuts include Staatskapelle Dresden, Bergen Philharmonic, West Australian Symphony Orchestra and his debut in a European opera house, at Grand Théâtre de Genève. He continues his cycle of Mahler symphonies with Japan Philharmonic.
He is active in the field of opera, and will be performing ‘La Traviata’, ‘Carmen’ and ‘Rusalka’ in Japan in coming seasons. He is strongly supported by Seiji Ozawa and in August 2012 he conducted a semi-staged production of Honegger’s ‘Jeanne d´arc’, with Saito-Kinen Orchestra. The ‘Jeanne d’Arc’ project was also a huge hit in spring 2015 in Côme de Bellescize’s staged version at the new Philharmonie hall in Paris, with Orchestre de Paris. The character of Joan of Arc was performed by the French actress Marion Cotillard and the production received high critical praise.
Yamada and Orchestre de la Suisse Romande are releasing a series of CDs inspired by dance, on the Pentatone label. This continues in the current season with a recording of French ballet works, and another of works by Manuel de Falla. Furthermore, a disc of works by Glazunov, Kalinnikov and Khatchaturian with Czech Philharmonic was released in 2014. Yamada is also Tokyo Philharmonic Chorus’s Music Director and the chorus has released ten CDs on Fontec.
Now resident in Berlin, Yamada was born in Kanagawa, Japan, in 1979. In 2009 he was the winner of the 51st Besancon International Competition for young conductors.