Fabio Luisi

Music Director

Louise W. & Edmund J. Kahn Music Directorship

GRAMMY® Award winner Fabio Luisi launched his tenure as Louise W. & Edmund J. Kahn Music Director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO) at the start of the 2020/21 season. In January 2021, the DSO and Luisi announced an extension of the Music Director’s contract through the 2028/29 season. A maestro of major international standing, the Italian conductor is also set to embark on his sixth season as Principal Conductor of the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, and in September 2022 he assumed the role of Principal Conductor of the NHK Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo. He previously served for six seasons as Principal Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera and nine seasons as General Music Director of the Zurich Opera.

In September 2022, Luisi and the Dallas Symphony will release their first recording project together. Brahms’s First and Second Symphonies will be available through the DSO’s in-house DSO Live label. Fabio Luisi’s 2022/23 programs in Dallas and for the DSO’s Next Stage Digital Concert Series will feature performances of the music of beloved classical composers, a continued examination of American music, and large-scale choral and orchestral works. A world-renowned interpreter of the music of Richard Strauss, Luisi will conduct the composer’s tone poem Don Quixote for his first concert weekend, along with Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5. Hélène Grimaud will return to the DSO for Luisi’s second series of concerts, joining him in Brahms’s Piano Concerto No. 1. He will continue the program with César Franck’s Symphony in D minor, the composer’s best-known orchestral work.

As a prelude to the fourth annual Women in Classical Music Symposium in November, Luisi will present music by three female composers –Julia Perry, Clara Schumann and Louise Farrenc. The following week, the full Dallas Symphony Chorus will make its season debut in Verdi’s monumental Requiem, featuring Adriana González (soprano), Tamara Mumford (mezzo-soprano), Piero Pretti (tenor) and Wenwei Zhang (bass) as soloists. Acclaimed violinist Nicola Benedetti will return to the DSO to join Luisi for the U.S. premiere of James MacMillan’s Violin Concerto No. 2, and Luisi will conduct Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4, the cinematic “Romantic.” This will mark the first time during his tenure that Luisi has presented Bruckner. In his three final concerts of the season, Luisi mixes the familiar with the unique. Continuing his recording project of the complete Brahms symphonies, Luisi will perform both Brahms’s Third and Fourth Symphonies with the DSO. He also welcomes composer-in-residence Angélica Negrón for the world premiere of her new work, Arquitecta. Luisi closes his season with the orchestra with two works by Carl Orff, the iconic Carmina Burana and the rarely heard Catulli Carmina.

Other highlights of the 2022/23 season include several concerts with the NHK Symphony Orchestra (Tokyo) in Luisi’s first season as Principal Conductor; a new production of Verdi’s I vespri siciliani at La Scala (Milan); and the continuation,with the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, of his recording series of Carl Nielsen’s symphonies for the renowned Deutsche Grammophon label.

The conductor received his first GRAMMY® Award in March 2013 for his leadership of the last two operas of Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, when Deutsche Grammophon’s DVD release of the full cycle, recorded live at the Met, was named Best Opera Recording of 2012. In February 2015, the Philharmonia Zurich launched its Philharmonia Records label with three Luisi recordings: Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique, a double album surveying Wagner’s Preludes and Interludes, and a DVD of Verdi’s Rigoletto. Subsequent releases have included a survey of Rachmaninov’s Four Piano Concertos and Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with soloist Lise de la Salle, and a rare recording of the original version of Bruckner’s monumental Symphony No. 8. Luisi’s extensive discography also includes rare Verdi operas (Jérusalem, Alzira and Aroldo), Salieri’s La locandiera, Bellini’s I puritani and I Capuleti e i Montecchi with Anna Netrebko and Elīna Garanča for Deutsche Grammophon, and the symphonic repertoire of Honegger, Respighi and Liszt. He has recorded all the symphonies and the oratorio Das Buch mit sieben Siegeln by neglected Austrian composer Franz Schmidt, several works by Richard Strauss for Sony Classical, and an award – winning account of Bruckner’s Ninth Symphony with the Staatskapelle Dresden.

Born in Genoa in 1959, Luisi began piano studies at the age of four and received his diploma from the Conservatorio Niccolò Paganini in 1978. He later studied conducting with Milan Horvat at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Graz. Named both Cavaliere della Repubblica Italiana and Commendatore della Stella d’Italia for his role in promoting Italian culture abroad, in 2014 he was awarded the Grifo d’Oro, the highest honor given by the city of Genoa, for his contributions to the city’s cultural legacy. Off the podium, Luisi is an accomplished composer whose Saint Bonaventure Mass received its world premiere at St. Bonaventure University, followed by its New York City premiere in the MetLiveArts series, with the Buffalo Philharmonic and Chorus. As reported by the New York Times, CBS Sunday Morning and elsewhere, he is also a passionate maker of perfumes, which he produces in a one-person operation, flparfums.com.