QUEBEC, Dec. 14, 2022 /PRNewswire/ – The Orchestre symphonique de Québec is pleased to announce the arrival of Clemens Schuldt as Music Director as of the 2023-2024 season, for a four-year mandate. He succeeds Fabien Gabel who held this position from 2012 to 2020. On January 18, Clemens Schuldt will conduct the Orchestra’s first concert of 2023: Elgar’s Cello Concerto.

His sense of commitment, the quality and excellence of his connection with the musicians, coupled with their enthusiasm and that of the Music Director Renewal Committee, naturally led the Orchestra to select this brilliant, visionary, charismatic and unifying conductor.

This appointment is the result of a rigorous recruitment process: the selection committee, chaired by Sophie D’Amours, Rector of Université Laval, was composed of musicians from the Orchestra, members of the management team, members of the Board of Directors, and personalities from the Canadian and international music community. The Orchestra would like to acknowledge the quality of the various candidates who auditioned, whose professionalism and artistic rigor reflect the influence and prestige of the Orchestre symphonique de Québec in the music scene.

“It is a great pleasure and an honour for me to become the new music director of the Orchestre symphonique de Québec! When I first met the musicians and the wonderful audience in Quebec City earlier this year, the temperature may have dropped to -20 degrees, but the welcome was warm. From the first minutes of our collaboration, I was impressed by the sound, sensitivity, flexibility and passion of each musician. I am convinced that together we will accomplish great things, strengthening the reputation of the Orchestra in the region and far beyond. First and foremost, our mission is to captivate audiences and deliver an exciting program and musical production. This orchestra, known as open-minded, will be innovative and accessible to audiences of all ages and backgrounds, to all classical music lovers and those who do not know they will be one soon. Many thanks to my predecessors Fabien Gabel and Bramwell Tovey for their wonderful work. I know they were appreciated and will be missed by the musicians and the audience. It goes without saying that the high quality of the current Orchestra is also the result of their work and commitment over the past years. Now a page is being turned, and I look forward to embarking on this journey with you all!” Clemens Schuldt

“On behalf of my colleagues at the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec, it is a privilege and an honour for me to welcome our new music director, Clemens Schuldt. It is a rare occurrence for a conductor to elicit such spectacular consensus amongst musicians. Working with this young and brilliant conductor has energised the orchestra like never before. We are delighted to start the next chapter of the Orchestra’s story with Maestro Schuldt. Together, we will reach new musical heights!” Catherine Dallaire, Concertmaster (interim)

“I am very much looking forward to this new collaboration with Clemens Schuldt. I was quickly won over by his charisma and his direction, as were the musicians. Clemens Schuldt’s musical personality and sense of commitment are a natural fit with the values of the Orchestra. I am convinced that his qualities as a great musician will perpetuate the Orchestra’s performance and influence in Quebec City, in Canada, and internationally. His appointment is in keeping with the Orchestra’s desire for openness and commitment, and the conviction that we must continue to make culture accessible to all. The Orchestre symphonique de Québec has always grown through its musicians and conductors. The public will be happy to discover who will lead our prestigious ensemble. We look forward to him leading our great Orchestra!” Sophie D’Amours, Chair of the Music Direction Renewal Committee

“I am more than happy that we have found the ‘rare pearl’ among our candidates, who has exceptional talent and dynamism, to take over from Maestro Gabel as Music Director of the Orchestre symphonique de Québec. Clemens Schuldt was not only unanimously accepted by our musicians and the selection committee, but also by all those who crossed his path during his visit to Quebec City. Clemens is an extremely warm, talented and friendly (young) man. We are truly blessed to be able to welcome him to our home in Quebec City for the next four years. A new chapter is opening for the Orchestre symphonique de Québec. Herzlich willkommen Clemens! (A heartfelt welcome to Clemens!).” Britta Kröger, President of the Board of Directors.

“It is with great pleasure and pride that we welcome Clemens Schuldt to the Orchestre symphonique de Québec as the 12th music director of Canada’s oldest orchestra. I join the members of the Music Direction Renewal Committee and all the musicians in wishing him a warm welcome to the National Capital. I am convinced that our fellow citizens, but also music lovers in Quebec, Canada and North America will see him as the extremely talented, inspired, creative, exciting and accessible conductor he is and that they will not be able to resist his charm and his artistic vision. Welcome Clemens and let the show begin!” Astrid Chouinard, President and CEO

His international career began in 2010 when he won the first prize in the prestigious Donatella Flick Conducting Competition and the resulting position as Assistant Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, working with conductors such as Sir Colin Davis, Sir Simon Rattle and Daniel Harding.

He was Principal Conductor of the Munich Chamber Orchestra (Münchener Kammerorchester) from 2016-2022, one of Europe’s leading and most innovative chamber orchestras. In addition to regular opera productions in Germany and England (Garsington Festival, Opera North), it is his international concert invitations in Japan (Yumiuri Nippon Orchestra), USA (Oregon Symphony), Europe (Toulouse, Manchester, Philharmonia London, WDR Cologne, DR Symphony Copenhagen) and Australia (Tasmania) that make him a leading conductor of his generation from Germany.

Born in Bremen, he first studied violin before completing his conducting studies in Düsseldorf, Vienna and Weimar.

Founded by Joseph Vézina in 1902, the Orchestre symphonique de Québec, the dean of Canadian orchestras, has always been closely linked to the events that have marked the history of Québec City and participates in many events of national and international scope. In addition to the major works of the symphonic repertoire, it has premiered numerous works by Quebec, Canadian and foreign composers. Since its creation, the Orchestra has received numerous awards and distinctions. A leader in education and cultural mediation, the Orchestre symphonique de Québec contributes to the democratization of symphonic music with innovative projects such as Zoo musical® and the digital educational platform Symphonic Gallery, Les Matinées symphoniques (elementary school) and Notes à répétition (high school). The Orchestra is distinguished by its collaborations with the Conservatoire de musique de Québec and the Faculty of Music of Université Laval. Eleven conductors have succeeded one another in the history of the Orchestre symphonique de Québec, including: Joseph Vézina, Edwin Bélanger, Wilfrid Pelletier, James DePreist, Yoav Talmi, conductor emeritus, and Fabien Gabel.

SOURCE – Orchestre symphonique de Québec

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