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GRAMMY and Juno award-winning conductor/composer Bramwell Tovey was appointed Music Director of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in 2000. Under his leadership the VSO has toured China, Korea, Canada and the United States. Bramwell is also the Artistic Adviser of the VSO School of Music, a state-of-the-art facility and recital hall which opened in downtown Vancouver in 2011. Mr. Tovey’s tenure has included complete symphony cycles of Beethoven, Mahler, Brahms and the establishment of an annual festival dedicated to contemporary music. In 2018, the VSO’s centenary year, Bramwell will become the orchestra’s Music Director Emeritus.
During the current season Mr. Tovey’s guest appearances include the BBC and Royal Philharmonics, the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics, the Boston Symphony, Philadelphia and Cleveland Orchestras and the Toronto Symphony. In the summer of 2014 he will make his debut with the Chicago Symphony at the Ravinia Festival and in 2015 will lead Korngold’s Die Tote Stadt for Calgary Opera.
In 2003 Bramwell Tovey won the Juno Award for Best Classical Composition for his choral and brass work Requiem for a Charred Skull. Commissions include the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics, the Toronto Symphony and Calgary Opera who premiered his first full length opera The Inventor in 2011. A recording of the work by the VSO with UBC Opera and the original cast will be issued on the Naxos label in 2014. Earlier this season, his trumpet concerto, Songs of the Paradise Saloon was performed by the LA Philharmonic with Alison Balsom as soloist, who will also perform the work with the Philadelphia Orchestra in December 2014.
Bramwell has appeared as pianist with many major orchestras including the New York, Sydney, Melbourne, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, St Louis, Toronto, Royal Scottish orchestras. In the summer of 2014 he will play/conduct Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue at the Hollywood Bowl with the LA Phil and in Saratoga with the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has performed his own Pictures in the Smoke with the Melbourne and Helsingborg Symphonies and the Royal Philharmonic.
Maestro Tovey was Music Director of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra from 1989 to 2001 where he founded the WSO’s New Music Festival. From 2002-2006 he was Music Director of Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg, leading tours of Europe, the USA, China and Korea.
Bramwell is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London, the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto and holds honorary degrees from the universities of British Columbia, Manitoba, Kwantlen and Winnipeg. In 2013 he was appointed an honorary Officer of the Order of Canada for services to music.