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Christian Karlsen - NOSPR

Christian Karlsen Conductor

photo by Karl Gabor

Already at the age of twenty he collaborated with Karlheinz Stockhausen, Swedish conductor Christian Karlsen (1985*) has since formed close relationships with many of the world's foremost composers, including Sir George Benjamin, Kaija Saariaho and Steve Reich. Quickly establishing as one of Europe's foremost conductors of contemporary music, he is equally at home in the traditional repertoire and especially acclaimed for his interpretations of Mozart and Haydn.

Regularly appearing with leading orchestras as the London Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, BBC Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, Gürzenich Orchester Köln, hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt, ORF Radiosymphonie-Orchester Wien, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Gothenburg Symphony, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, Swedish Chamber Orchestra, Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra and the Amsterdam Sinfonietta, he also regularly works with leading groups for contemporary music incl. Ensemble Modern, Israel Contemporary Players, BIT20 Bergen, International Contemporary Ensemble and ASKO|Schönberg.

Recent stage productions include the Händel/Sad Moultaka double-bill Delirio at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Kaija Saariaho's La Passion de Simone at the Royal Swedish Opera with Anne-Sofie von Otter, Stockhausen's Michael's Reise at the Dutch National Opera, Djuro Zivkovic’s Bogoluchie in Stockholm and Bergen and the Wiener Festwochen production Hymns and Laments with musicians from Wiener Symphoniker.

In 2017 he created the successful festival Gränslandet – symfonisk fest in Stockholm with pianist David Huang. Seven editions later he has yearly inspired thousands of young adults with limited or no previous experience of classical music to take their first steps to discover the art form. He has been part of two seasons of Swedish national television’s (SVT) culture programme Kulturfrågan Kontrapunkt and was previously artistic director of the Residentie Orchestra Den Haag’s festival Dag in de Branding (2015–2017) and the New European Ensemble from 2008-2014.

His critically acclaimed debut album with London Philharmonic Orchestra on BIS records has been awarded a Diapason d’Or and a Swedish Grammy Awarded. He studied at the Royal Conservatoire Den Haag and in London with John Carewe and served as assistant to Esa-Pekka Salonen.


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