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Conductor MANFRED HONECK was born in Austria and studied music at the Academy of Music in Vienna. Several years of experience as a member of the Vienna Philharmonic and the Vienna State Opera Orchestra as well as conductor of Vienna’s Jeunesse Orchestra have given his conducting a distinctive stamp.
In 1987/88 Manfred Honeck was assistant to Claudio Abbado at the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra in Vienna. His debut at the Wiener Volksoper in 1989 with Johann Strauss, Jr.’s Die Fledermaus was followed in September 1990 by performances of Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro and Rossini’s Barber of Seville. In the autumn of 1990, Honeck made a much-acclaimed debut at a successful concert with the Staatskapelle Berlin at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden. John Neumeier invited him to conduct for a Mahler production at the Ballett-Tage 1993 in Hamburg; at the Hamburg Opera he conducted a revival of Mozart’s Così fan tutte the following season.
From 1991 to 1997, Manfred Honeck was engaged by the Zurich Opera House where he conducted premieres of Giordano’s Fedora and Andrea Chénier as well as Massenet’s Hérodiade and the world premiere of Herbert Willi’s Schlafes Bruder. In December 1997 he led a new production of Mozart’s Idomeneo at the Royal Danish Opera and between 1997 and 1998 he was Music Director of the Norwegian National Opera in Oslo. There, he conducted the new productions of Otello, Cavalleria rusticana, Pagliacci, and Idomeneo.
In the concert hall, Honeck has worked with the Radio Symphony Orchestras of Frankfurt, Cologne, and Vienna, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra Sinfonica della Scala, the Swedish Radio Symphony, the Danish National Radio Symphony and the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra. He made his debut with the Vienna Philharmonic during the Mozart Week Salzburg 1994. He has also worked with the Chicago and Houston Symphony Orchestras, the Oslo Philharmonic, the Staatskapelle Dresden, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. On short notice, he substituted during a tour with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra in August 1996, which included two BBC Proms concerts and concerts at the Festivals in Edinburgh and Lucerne, appearances for which he enjoyed enormous public and critical success.
Since his debut with the Oslo Philharmonic in 1995, Honeck has been invited back regularly, and in 1998 he was appointed as the orchestra’s first principal guest conductor. From 1996 to 1999, he was one of the three main conductors of the MDR Symphony Orchestra Leipzig. He was recently appointed music director of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and will begin his tenure there next season.