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This season the brilliant young French conductor, EMMANUEL VILLAUME begins his position as Music Director, Opera and Orchestra of Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston, South Carolina.
Following his successful debut with the Royal Opera for Tales of Hoffmann in September, he returns to the Houston and Indianapolis Symphonies and debuts with the San Francisco Symphony, Symphony Australia in Sydney and Melbourne, and the Cologne Opera for Werther.
Born in Strasbourg in 1964, he began his musical education at the Strasbourg Conservatory and continued his studies in Paris where he received degrees in literature, philosophy, and musicology. He also studied dramatic arts and performed in theatrical productions. Mr. Villaume is the author of noted musicological articles and research papers.
At the age of twenty-one he was appointed Dramaturg of the Opera du Rhin in Strasbourg. During his tenure he came to the attention of Spiros Argiris, Music Director of the Spoleto Festival in Italy, who invited him to conduct and narrate Debussy's Les Chansons de Bilitis in 1987. Mr. Argiris, who was also the Music Director of Spoleto Festival USA invited Mr. Villaume to make his American debut there with Le Nozze di Figaro in 1990. Mr. Villaume began a close collaboration with both festivals where he conducted numerous symphonic concerts and opera performances including the American premiere of Henze's Der Prinz von Homburg.
Mr. Villaume has appeared with the Washington Opera for La Rondine and Le Cid, and the Dallas Opera for Faust. He returns to Washington in September 2001 for Tales of Hoffmann and to Dallas in January 2002 for Le Nozze di Figaro. He debuts with Opera Marseilles in November 2001 for Pelleas et Melisande, and with the Lyric Opera of Chicago in December 2003 for Samson et Dalila. He has also appeared with the San Francisco Opera for Madama Butterfly, Los Angeles Opera for La Rondine, Santa Fe Opera for Carmen, Bastille Opera for Rigoletto, Bonn Opera for La Fanciulla del West, Martina Franca Opera for The Grande Duchesse of Gerolstein, Montreal Opera for La Vie Parisienne, Sarasota Opera for Tales of Hoffmann, The Magic Flute and Manon, and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis for La Rondine and Faust.
He has led the Boston Symphony at Symphony Hall and the Tanglewood Festival, Houston Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, Orchestre de Paris, Beethovenhalle Orchestra of Bonn, and the orchestras of the Bastille Opera, Monte Carlo Philharmonic, Orchestra Sinfonica Siciliana, Teatro alla Scala, and La Fenice with a concert performance of Berlioz's Les Troyens.