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John Storgårds

Artistic Director

John Storgårds is a sought-after conductor both in Finland and abroad. The Artistic Director of the Lapland Chamber Orchestra is also the Principal Guest Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic and the National Arts Centre Orchestra Ottawa.

John Storgårds (born 1963) has studied orchestral conducting, composition and violin both at the Sibelius Academy and abroad. He completed a diploma in conducting with honours at the Sibelius Academy in the spring of 1997.

Storgårds began his career as a violinist. He worked as a concertmaster in the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra. His first permanent conductor appointment was with the Helsinki University Symphony Orchestra from 1992 to 1996. From 2003 to 2008, he was the Principal Guest Conductor of the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, and from autumn 2008 to the end of 2015, he served as the orchestra’s 12th Chief Conductor. Storgårds has also permanently conducted the Oulu Symphony Orchestra, the Tapiola Sinfonietta and, as Chief Conductor, the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra.

Storgårds started as the Artistic Director of the Lapland Chamber Orchestra in 1996. Storgårds’ permanent appointments abroad include being the Principal Guest Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and the National Arts Centre Orchestra Ottawa. Storgårds has also worked as an artistic partner to the Munich Chamber Orchestra. Storgårds’ appointments in recent seasons have included a brilliantly received debut with the New York Philharmonic and performances with the Chicago and St. Louis Symphony Orchestras, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. Storgårds is also a regular performer at the London Proms with the BBC Philharmonic. As an opera conductor, Storgårds has worked in many productions at the Finnish National Opera, the most recent of which is Fagerlund’s Autumn Sonata. At the Savonlinna Opera Festival, he has conducted, for example, Mozart’s Don Giovanni in 2016. During the 2021/2022 season, Storgårds makes his debut as conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic and serves as a judge in the international violin competition of the German broadcaster ARD.

The list of Storgårds’ orchestral recordings is extensive. It includes, for example, full recordings of symphonies by Sibelius and Nielsen. Storgårds performs and records extensively as a violinist as well. Storgårds has received numerous public accolades, including the State Prize for Music in 2002 and the Pro Finlandia Medal in 2012. He is also an Honorary Doctor of the University of Lapland.