Manfred Honeck has served as Music Director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra since the 2008-2009 season and has twice extended his contract, which currently runs until the end of the 2019-2020 season. His successful work in Pittsburgh has been is captured on CD by the Japanese label Exton, with so far Mahler’s Symphonies Nos. 1, 3, 4 and 5, Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5 and Richard Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben released to critical acclaim. The recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 has won an ICMA 2012 Award.
Manfred Honeck Austrian conductor born 1958
Honeck and the orchestra have undertaken regular successful tours, and since 2010 annual tour performances have led them to numerous European music capitals and major music festivals, amongst them Rheingau Musik Festival, Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, Beethovenfest Bonn, Musikfest Berlin, Grafenegg Festival, Lucerne Festival and the BBC Proms. The 2012 tour focused on a week-long residency at the Vienna Musikverein. In August and September 2013, concerts will take place in Grafenegg, Berlin, Bucharest, Paris, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Lucerne and Bonn.
From 2007 to 2011, Manfred Honeck was Music Director of the Staatsoper Stuttgart where he conducted numerous premieres including Berlioz’s Les Troyens, Mozart’s Idomeneo, Verdi’s Aida, Richard Strauss’s Rosenkavalier, Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites and Wagner’s Lohengrin and Parsifal as well as numerous symphonic concerts. His operatic guest appearances include Semperoper Dresden, Komische Oper Berlin, Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels, Royal Opera of Copenhagen, the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg and the Salzburg Festival.
Born in Austria, Manfred Honeck received his musical training at the Academy of Music in Vienna. Many years of experience as a member of the Vienna Philharmonic and the Vienna State Opera Orchestra and at the helm of the Vienna Jeunesse Orchestra have given his conducting a distinctive stamp. He commenced his career as assistant to Claudio Abbado in Vienna. Subsequently, he was engaged by the Zurich Opera House, where he was bestowed the prestigious European Conductor’s Award in 1993.
Other early stations of his career include Leipzig, where he was one of three main conductors of the MDR Symphony Orchestra and Oslo, where he assumed the post of Music Director at the Norwegian National Opera on short notice for a year and, following a highly successful tour of Europe, was engaged as Principal Guest Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra for several years. From 2000 to 2006 he was Music Director of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra in Stockholm and, from 2008 to 2011, Principal Guest Conductor of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he will resume for another three years at the beginning of the season 2013/2014.
As a guest conductor Manfred Honeck has worked with leading international orchestras such as the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Staatskapelle Dresden, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Accademia di Santa Cecilia Rome and the Vienna Philharmonic. Orchestras he conducted in the USA include New York Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra and Boston Symphony Orchestra. He is also a regular guest at the Verbier Festival. In February 2013 he gave his successful debut with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, the direct result of which was a CD recording together with Anne-Sophie Mutter (works of Dvorak) for DG.
The current season sees him return to Bamberg, Stuttgart, Rome and New York as well as to the Vienna Symphony (a CD of works by the Strauss family was released in summer 2013) and Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. He will also conduct Tonhalleorchester Zürich and Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, amongst others.
Manfred Honeck has received honorary doctorates from St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania and, most recently, from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Moreover, he has been Artistic Director of the ”International Concerts Wolfegg” in Germany for more than fifteen years.