Gustavo Dudamel © Nohely Oliveros
Acclaimed worldwide as one of the most exciting and compelling conductors of our time, Gustavo Dudamel began his tenure as Music Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic in fall 2009, while continuing as Music Director of the Gothenburg Symphony. Dudamel also entered his eleventh year as Music Director of the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela. His infectious energy and exceptional artistry have made him one of the most sought-after conductors by orchestras and opera companies around the world.
Following guest appearances with the Vienna Philharmonic and the Berlin Philharmonic, Gustavo Dudamel’s inaugural 2009-10 season as Los Angeles Philharmonic Music Director began on October 3 with ¡Bienvenido Gustavo! This free, day-long musical celebration at the Hollywood Bowl for the Los Angeles community culminated with Dudamel leading the Los Angeles Philharmonic in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. On October 8, 2009, Dudamel led the Los Angeles Philharmonic in the inaugural gala at Walt Disney Concert Hall, featuring the world premiere of John Adams’s City Noir and Mahler’s Symphony No. 1. This concert was telecast on PBS’s Great Performances throughout the U.S. on October 21, with subsequent airings throughout the world, and Deutsche Grammophon is issuing the DVD. Further highlights of the L.A. Phil season include Dudamel directing the Americas and Americans festival, a series of five concerts celebrating the music and shared cultural traditions of North, Central, and Latin America, as well as conducting concerts with repertoire ranging from Verdi’s Requiem to highlighting works by composers such as Chin, Salonen and Harrison. In May 2010, Dudamel leads the L.A. Phil on a coast-to-coast U.S. tour with performances in San Francisco, Phoenix, Chicago, Nashville, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, New York and New Jersey. With Gothenburg Symphony, highlights include numerous performances in Sweden as well as tours to Hamburg, Bonn, Amsterdam, Brussels, and the Canary Islands. Gustavo Dudamel continues to lead the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra this season for multiple periods in Caracas, Venezuela, and on European and Scandinavian/Russian tours.
Gustavo Dudamel has been an exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist since 2005. His debut recording, Beethoven Nos. 5&7 with the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra, was released worldwide in September 2006, and received the 2007 Echo Award (Germany) for “New Artist of the Year.” His second recording with the SBYO, Mahler No. 5, was released in May 2007, and was chosen as the only classical album on iTunes’ “Next Big Thing.” Released in May 2008, Dudamel’s third album with the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra was FIESTA, featuring Latin-American works. In March 2009, Deutsche Grammophon released Dudamel’s most recent recording with the SBYO, Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5 and Francesca da Rimini. His DVDs include the 2008 release of The Promise of Music, a documentary and concert with the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra; Birthday Concert for Pope Benedict XVI released in 2007; and the April 2009 DVD, Live from Salzburg, featuring performances of Mussorgsky/Ravel’s Pictures at an Exhibition and Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with Martha Argerich, Renaud and Gautier Capuçon, and the SBYO. On the iTunes front, Deutsche Grammophon has released Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique and Bartók Concerto for Orchestra.
Brought to international attention by triumphing in the inaugural Bamberger Symphoniker Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition in May 2004, Gustavo Dudamel was born in 1981 in Barquisimeto, Venezuela, where he studied violin at the Jacinto Lara Conservatory with José Luis Jiménez and later, with José Francisco del Castillo, at the Latin American Academy of Violin. In 1996, he began his conducting studies with Rodolfo Saglimbeni and that same year was named Music Director of the Amadeus Chamber Orchestra. In 1999, along with assuming the Music Director position of the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra, he began conducting studies with José Antonio Abreu, the Orchestra’s founder. In May 2007, Dudamel was awarded the Premio de la Latindad, an honor given for outstanding contributions to Latin cultural life. In 2008, the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra was granted Spain’s prestigious annual Prince of Asturias Award for the Arts, and in 2007, Dudamel received the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Award for Young Artists. Along with his mentor Dr. Abreu, he was granted the 2008 “Q Prize” from Harvard University for extraordinary service to children. In June 2009, he received an honorary doctorate from the Universidad Centro-Occidental Lisandro Alvarado in his hometown of Barquisimeto, Venezuela. Most recently in 2009, he was awarded the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in Paris. Gustavo Dudamel was named one of the 100 most influential people of 2009 by TIME magazine and has been featured twice on CBS’s 60 Minutes.