VALERY GERGIEV is Artistic and General Director of the Mariinsky Theatre, Principal Conductor of the Munich Philharmonic, Principal Conductor of the World Orchestra for Peace, Chair of the Organizational Committee of the International Tchaikovsky Competition, Honorary President of the Edinburgh International Festival, and Dean of the Faculty of Arts at the St. Petersburg State University.
As head of the Mariinsky Theatre, Gergiev has established and directs such international festivals as The Stars of the White Nights (St. Petersburg), the Moscow Easter Festival, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Gergiev Festival, the Mikkeli Music Festival, and the MPHIL 360° festival in Munich.
He has led numerous composer cycles including Hector Berlioz (1803-1869), Johannes Brahms (1833-1897), Henri Dutilleux (1916-2013), Gustav Mahler (1860-1911), Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953), Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975), Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971), Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893) in New York, London, Paris, and other international cities, and he has introduced audiences around the world to several rarely performed Russian operas.
Maestro Gergiev staged a production of Richard Wagner’s tetralogy Der Ring des Nibelungenin the original German language, the first such production in Russian history, and led that production in St. Petersburg, Moscow, Seoul, Tokyo, New York, Costa Mesa, and London. Gergiev also champions contemporary Russian composers such as Rodion Shchedrin (b. 1932), Boris Tishchenko (1939-2010), Sofia Gubaidulina (b. 1931), Alexander Raskatov (b. 1953), and Pavel Smelkov.
The Mariinsky label established in 2009 has released more than thirty discs and DVDs to date that have received great acclaim from the critics and the public throughout the world; recordings include symphonies and piano concertos by Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich, operas by Wagner, Massenet, and Donizetti, Prokofiev’s ballets Romeo and Juliet and Cinderella and his operas The Gambler and Semyon Kotko. Recent releases include Shchedrin’s The Left-Hander (DVD) and Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker and Symphony No 4.
Principal Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra from 2007 to 2015, Valery Gergiev has performed with the LSO and Mariinsky, and now with the Munich Philharmonic, on extensive tours of Europe, North America, and Asia. He also collaborates with the Metropolitan Opera, the Vienna Philharmonic, the orchestras of La Scala, New York, Munich, Amsterdam, and Rotterdam.
Since 2013, the maestro has directed the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America on two European toursand regularly appears with the youth orchestras of the Schleswig-Holstein Festival, the Verbier Festival, and the Pacific Ocean Music Festival in Sapporo.
is internationally recognized as one of the most outstanding musical figures today. His inspired leadership as Artistic and General Director of the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia, where he oversees the Kirov Orchestra, Ballet, and Opera, has brought universal acclaim to this distinguished organization. Together with the Kirov Opera and Orchestra, Gergiev has toured extensively throughout North America and Europe, as well as to China, Japan, South America, Australia, and Israel. In addition to his leadership of the Mariinsky Theatre he is also the Principal Conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic, Artistic Director of the Rotterdam Philharmonic/Gergiev Festival presented each September, Director and Founder of the Mikkeli International Festival in Finland, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera.
Gergiev and the Kirov Opera have appeared in residencies at the Metropolitan Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Chatelet in Paris, and Graz Opera House. Gergiev has appeared as guest conductor with the Vienna Philharmonic, the London Philharmonic, the Philharmonia of London, Los Angeles Philharmonic, the National Symphony, and the Pittsburgh Symphony.
Born in Moscow to Ossetian parents, Gergiev studied conducting with Ilya Musin at the Leningrad Conservatory. He won the Herbert von Karajan Conductors Competition in Berlin at age 24 and made his Kirov Opera debut in 1978 with War and Peace. He was appointed Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1988. He is the recipient of the Dmitri Shostakovich Award and the Golden Mask Award, the most prestigious theater prize in Russia. Musical America named him Conductor of the Year, and he was named the People's Artist of Russia, the country's highest cultural award.
Gergiev has recorded exclusively for Universal (Philips) Classics since 1989. His recordings with the Kirov encompass opera, ballet, and symphony repertoire. His recent releases include Shostakovich Symphony No. 7, Gubaidulina Viola Concerto with Yuri Bashmet, the Tchaikovsky and Miaskovsky violin concertos with Vadim Repin, and Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade, which has been internationally acclaimed as one of the best recordings of this work.