Sakari Oramo, Chair of the Jury
Sakari Oramo, Chair of the jury
Sakari Oramo is Chief Conductor of both the BBC Symphony and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic orchestras. A guest conductor at the highest international level and a prolific recording artist, his performances combine structural cohesion with authority, elegance and passionate delivery. He is Professor of Orchestral Training and Orchestral Conducting at the Sibelius Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki.
Guest engagements during the 2019/20 season include returns to the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Orchestre de Paris, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra. Highlights of recent seasons include concerts with the Berliner Philharmoniker – in 2018 he conducted the European premiere of Brett Dean’s new Cello Concerto, performed by Alban Gerhardt – NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester, Staatskapelle Dresden, and the Vienna Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, New York Philharmonic and Helsinki Philharmonic orchestras.
2019/20 marks Oramo’s sixth and twelfth season with the BBCSO and the RSPO respectively. With both orchestras he continues to champion new and rarely performed works – including William Alwyn’s opera Miss Julie, Betsy Jolas’ Onze Lieder, and the world premiere of Victoria Borisova-Ollas’ Violin Concerto (performed by Baiba Skride) – presenting them alongside stalwarts such as Mendelssohn’s Elijah and Haydn’s Trumpet Concerto (with Håkan Hardenberger) (BBCSO), and Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No.1 (with Beatrice Rana) and Mozart’s Symphony No.40 (RSPO). The season also includes tours with the RSPO to Germany and the UK, and with the BBCSO concerts in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Dresden and Prague. Oramo is a regular conductor at the BBC Proms, and during the summer of 2019 he conducted several with the BBCSO and Chorus – including the Last Night of the Proms, which he has previously conducted in 2014, 2016 and 2017.
Music Director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra between 1998 and 2008, Oramo has served as the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra’s Honorary Conductor since 2012, following a decade as their Chief Conductor. He was also Principal Conductor of the West Coast Kokkola Opera from 2004 to 2018 and Principal Conductor of the Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra from 2013 to 2019. An accomplished violinist, Oramo was originally concertmaster of the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra. In 2014 he made his debut in the BBC Proms Chamber Music series, performing Prokofiev’s Sonata for Two Violins with Janine Jansen.
Recording successes include the BBC Music Magazine’s Orchestra award for Nielsen Symphonies Nos. 1 & 3 with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, which completes their highly acclaimed Nielsen cycle on the BIS label, and a Gramophone Award nomination in the Orchestral category for Rued Langgaard Symphonies Nos. 2 & 6 and Jacob Gade’s Tango Jalousie with the Vienna Philharmonic and soprano Anu Komsi. Other recent releases include Busoni’s Piano Concerto with Kirill Gerstein and the Boston Symphony Orchestra (Myrios), and with the BBC Symphony Orchestra orchestral works by Sibelius (including the Lemminkäinen Suite), Rachmaninov Piano Concertos Nos. 2 and 3 with Yevgeny Sudbin, and Florent Schmitt: Suites from 'Antoine et Cléopâtre' & Symphony No. 2.
© Photo: Benjamin Ealovega