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Musical World

Kristjan Jarvi

  • Conductor


Kristjan Järvi’s name has become synonymous with artistic and cultural diversity, embodied in his roles as Artistic Advisor to the Basel Chamber Orchestra and Founder and Music Director of New York’s Absolute Ensemble. His imaginative programming has been embraced by leaders of classical, jazz and world music spheres alike. Järvi’s authentic commitment to all genres is reflected in his collaborations with Arvo Pärt, Tan Dun, John Adams, Esa-Pekka Salonen, H.K Gruber, Renee Fleming, Joe Zawinul, Benny Andersson, Goran Bregovic, Paquito d’Rivera, Eitetsu Hayashi and Marcel Khalife.

Kristjan Järvi has actively sought the commission of over 100 new works. Premieres in the 2009-10 Season include works by: Indian composer Nitin Sawhney with the London Symphony Orchestra, Daniel Schnyder with the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, James MacMillan with the London Symphony Orchestra and Tim Garland with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Järvi will also record Arvo Pärt’s newly commissioned Stabat Mater with the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra.

Kristjan Järvi is a dynamic and enterprising music educator. He is Founding Conductor and Music Director of the Baltic Youth Philharmonic. With the support of former German Chancellor Schröder, Valery Gergiev and Esa-Pekka Salonen, the Baltic Youth Philharmonic aims to become an education and performance hub for the Baltic region. This season the BYP opened Bremen Musikfest and Usedom Music Festival and toured the Baltic Sea Nations. In 2010 it will return to Usedom and Bremen, perform at St. Petersburg’s White Nights Festival and tour Bernstein’s Mass throughout Europe.

Additionally, Järvi is Founder and Music Director of the Absolute Academy (resident annually at Musikfest Bremen) and co-founder of the Muusikaselts Estonian Orphanage Program. Mr. Järvi has worked with Japan’s Hyogo Youth Orchestra, the Norwegian Youth Orchestra, the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie, Sydney Sinfonia and the National Repertory Orchestra, Colorado.

Kristjan Järvi is highly sought-after as a Guest Conductor. He appears regularly and exclusively in London with the London Symphony Orchestra, with whom he will tour Europe and Asia in the 2009-10 season. In 2009 Järvi will conduct Teatro Reggio Torino in a new production of Rossini’s Tancredi. Further guest conducting engagements in this and last season include concerts with: Staatskapelle Dresden; Bayerische Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig; NDR Hamburg; Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra; City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Orchestre National de France; Orchestre de Paris; Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia Rome; National Symphony Orchestra, Washington; Sydney Symphony; and NHK Symphony Japan.

Kristjan Järvi is a passionate recording artist with more than 25 albums to his credit. He has received a list of accolades, including a Swedish Grammy for Best Opera Performance, the German Record Critics Prize for Best Album and a Grammy Nomination. The 2009 Chandos release of Bernstein’s epic Mass was met with widespread acclaim and was Gramophone Magazine’s “Editor’s Choice.” Other recent releases include Haydn’s Paris Symphonies and Schmidt’s Das Buch mit Sieben Siegeln. In 2009 Kristjan Järvi will release Mahler’s little-known arrangement of Beethoven 9 with the Vienna Tonkünstler Orchestra; and Absolute Zawinul - the late Joe Zawinul’s last studio recording.

An accomplished pianist, Kristjan Järvi studied piano at the Manhattan School of Music and conducting at the University of Michigan. He began his career assisting Esa-Pekka Salonen at the Los Angeles Philharmonic, followed by Chief Conductor and Music Director posts at both the Norrlands Opera and Symphony Orchestra, Sweden (2000-2004) and the Tonkünstler Orchestra, Vienna (2004-2009). In 2007 Musikfest Bremen honored Kristjan Järvi and Absolute Ensemble with the Deutsche Bank Prize in recognition of Outstanding Artistic Achievement.

Kristjan Järvi makes his home in Vienna and Florida together with his wife and three children.