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Oliver von Dohnanyi



A brilliant podium artist from one of the oldest musical families in history
in the category "The best work of a conductor"

One of the most versatile European conductors, who is at home both on concert stages and in opera houses all over the world. His vast repertoire is mainly focused on the music of the 19th and 20th centuries, but he is a tireless promoter of the best composers and compositions created in the 21st century.


He started the New Year 2023 with a festive concert at the famous Liszt Academy together with the Hungarian Radio Orchestra, broadcast live on Hungarian state television and radio. In Budapest, in addition to conducting in the National Opera House, he conducted a concert with the Hungarian National Philharmonic on the occasion of Hungarian Classical Music Day, he also opened this year's concert season in the Bartók Hall at the MÜPA and a regular subscription concerts with works by Bartók, Erkel, Dohnányi and Stravinsky. He successfully prepared Mussorgsky's production of „Boris Godunov“ at the Innsbruck Opera House and performed Dvořák's „Requiem“ with Lodž Philharmonic, Poland.

In the summer of 2022, he worked in Adelaide, Australia, conducting Verdi's „Traviata“ with the State Opera ensemble and he prepared a new production of Ján Cikker's opera „Resurrection", one milestone of Slovak Opera History, at Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava.

At the beginning of 2021, he conducted two operas at the Hungarian State Opera - „Luthier de Cremona" by Jenö Hubay and „Aunt Simona" by Ernest von Dohnányi. Both operas were recorded on DVD and CD in 2022.

Since 2020, he has been regularly working with the Bulgarian National Opera in Sofia, where he conducts productions of „Tosca", „Turandot", „Don Carlos" and Verdi's „Macbeth", starring Alexandrina Pendachanska and Kiril Manolov. With the orchestra and the huge choir of the Hungarian State Opera, he opened the new Eiffel Art Studios building in Budapest, where he conducted Mahler's 8th „Symphony of Thousands”.

Orchestras and concerts:

Currently, he often collaborates with the Czech National Symphony Orchestra Prague and is a permanent guest conductor of the Slovak Sinfonietta Chamber Orchestra.

He has also conducted the following orchestras: London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, London Mozart Players, BBC Manchester and BBC Belfast, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Sinfonietta, Philharmonie Buenos Aires, Tonkünstler Orchestra Wien, Hungarian State Philharmonic, Zagreb Philharmonic and Zagreb Radio Symphony Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, Slovak Philharmonic, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Wellington SO and many symphony orchestras in France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands and Hungary, New Zealand, Japan and Great Britain. Successfully conducted also the Northern Junior Philharmonic Orchestra, U.K., Ural Opera House, Yekaterinburg, Russia (2015-2020).

In the 2015/16 season, he was appointed chief conductor of the Ural Opera House in Yekaterinburg, Russia. In 2015, his first production of Philip Glass's opera „Satyagraha" won two Golden Masks - Russia's highest theatre award. The production was presented at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow as part of Russia's largest theatre festival and immediately attracted the attention of Russian and international critics and experts. In addition to this opera, which is still in the repertoire, he also conducted the operas: „The Magic Flute“, „The Flying Dutchman", „Eugene Onegin", „La Bohème", „Otello", „Carmen" and „Rigoletto".

In April 2018, he received the highest Russian national theatre award - Golden Mask in the category „Best work of a conductor in an opera", among about 85 conductors working in Russia, for Weinberg's opera „Passenger", which he also conducted (at the Russian premiere) at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow. His last production for Yekaterinburg - Petr Eötvös's opera „Three Sisters" was performed in March 2020 with great success in Moscow at the Golden Mask Festival and won the title „Best Opera Production of the Year".


He started his work immediately after studying at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (Prof. Václav Neumann) and the Academy of Music in Vienna (Prof. Otmar Suittner). He also participated in master classes with Franco Ferrara, Igor Markevič and Arvid Janssons. He is a finalist in Talich's Prague Spring competition and Hungarian Television's conducting competition.


Bratislava: He started his work right after his studies when he got the position of conductor of the Czechoslovak Radio Symphony Orchestra in Bratislava, where he worked for seven years.

At the age of 28, after his first successful production of the opera „Barbiere di Siviglia" for the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava, he became the youngest chief conductor in the opera house's history. He has conducted many productions, including the operas „Madama Butterfly", „Aida", „La Bohème", „Rusalka", „Macbeth", „Tosca", „Il Barbiere di Siviglia", „La sonnambula", „Faust“ (Gounod), „Krútňava" (Suchoň) and others. He toured extensively in Spain, Bulgaria, China, Hungary, Germany, the Netherlands and other countries. At the Edinburgh Festival, he conducted Gounod's „Faust" (which won a Special International Jury Prize) and also a performance of Borodin's „Prince Igor“. Three years later, he was appointed conductor of the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra in Bratislava.


His career attracted him to Prague, where he was invited as a guest conductor to the National Theatre. Immediately after his first performance of „La Bohème', he was offered the position of Chief conductor. Between 1993 and 2007, he conducted hundreds of opera performances, such as „La Bohème", „Romeo et Juliett (Gounod), „Il Barbiere di Siviglia", „Il Turco in Italia", „The Bartered Bride", „Rigoletto", „La Traviata", „Rusalka", „Samson and Delilah", „Macbeth", „Libuse", „Don Giovanni", „The Marriage of Figaro", „The Magic Flute", „Don Pasquale", „Tosca", „Norma", „Aida" and also Prokofiev's ballet productions of „Romeo and Juliet" and „Cinderella".

Between 2006 and 2010, he also worked as the Artistic Director of the Opera of the Moravian-Silesian National Theater in Ostrava. During this time he studied and conducted „La Traviata“, „Vita" (M. Tuttino), „Faust" (Ch. Gounod), „Carmen", „Don Giovanni" and „Marriage of Figaro", „The Bartered Bride" and „Dalibor" (B. Smetana), „Jenůfa" (L. Janáček) and the ballet „Romeo and Juliet“.

He won a special prize at the Salzburg Television Festival for the recording of the television opera „Memento Mori" by the Slovak composer Juraj Filas with the Prague Symphony Orchestra.

In 2004, he conducted Mozart's „Magic Flute" with great success at the famous Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. He returned to the Teatro Colon in 2017 when he conducted Wagner's early opera „The Ban of Love" ("Das Liebesverbot")

Other opera productions:

ENO (English National Opera): „Falstaff", „The Merry Widow" and „Mephistopheles" (Boito)

Barbican Centre, London: Concert performance of „Ernani“ starring Marina Guleghina and Fabio Armiliato. Opera North, Leeds, UK: „Carmen", „La Gioconda", „Rusalka", „Andrea Chénier", „Norma", „Hamlet", „La Traviata", „The Bartered Bride"

MÜPA Budapest and Slovak National Opera House: „Norma“ (Bellini) starring Edita Gruberova Munich Bavarian State Opera: „Romeo and Juliet" and „Cinderella" (Prokofiev), „In the Blue Garden" (Ravel, Mozart) and „A Midsummer Night's Dream" (Mendelssohn and Ligetti)

Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe: „Macbeth" and „Romeo and Juliet“ (Gounod)

Mannheim National Theater: „Don Giovanni" and „Tosca".

Latest productions in 2017-2019:

„Katja Kabanová" at the Seattle Opera, Wagner „Das Liebesverbot" at the Teatro Verdi, Trieste and also Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires, „Les Huguenots" at the Hungarian State Opera in Budapest, „Carmen" for the New Zealand Opera, „The Magic Flute", „Rusalka", „Greek Passion" and „Turandot" at the Ural Opera in Yekaterinburg.

In 2019 he made his Australian debut with „Carmen" in Adelaide and staged and conducted Puccini's „Tosca" with Queensland Opera in Brisbane.

Awards and honors:

In addition to the Golden Masks, Oliver Dohnányi won the European Gustav Mahler Prize (2011) and the European Union Prize for the Arts (2011). His production of Norma won the "British Opera Award" for Opera North, Leeds (Theatre Award 2012 and Achievement in Opera 2012, directed by Christopher Alden) and "The Bartered Bride" won Best Opera Production of 1998 (Great Britain, directed by Daniel Slater)


He made numerous successful recordings with Naxos, Lyra, Opus / Audiphon, Panton, Supraphon and Marco Polo, including works by Glinka, Chatchaturian, Rimsky-Korsakov and Tchaikovsky for the Swiss label Novalis.

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