Chief conductor Ville Matvejeff
Ville Matvejeff (1986) started as Jyväskylä Sinfonia's Chief Conductor at the beginning of 2014. His position as Chief Conductor lasts until the year of 2022.
Matvejeff has established himself as an exceptionally wide-ranging musician enjoying success as conductor, composer and pianist. He trained at the Sibelius Academy and Espoo Music Institute and has performed throughout Europe as well as the USA, China, Japan and Mexico.
In January 2014 he assumed the position of Chief Conductor of Jyväskylä Sinfonia where his contract has been extended for a third term. He has just stepped down from the position of Artistic Director of the Turku Music Festival and recently been appointed as Artistic Director Designate of Savonlinna Opera Festival which he will take up alongside his regular work as Principal Guest Conductor with the Croatian National Theatre Ivan Zajc, Rijeka.
Appearances last season include debuts with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Choir and the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra, conducting repertoire from Sibelius and Ravel, to Hindemith, Aho and Rautavaara and re-invitations to the Duisburg and Tampere Philharmonic Orchestras and the Tapiola Sinfonietta. Matvejeff has developed a broad repertoire extending from the classical through to the 20th century and contemporary. In 2016 he led the Tampere Philharmonic for the Tampere Biennale 30th anniversary in an all-Finnish programme featuring two world premieres; this season he visits Vilnius Festival, again with a contemporary programme. A bass-baritone with solo performances on both concert and opera stages to his credit, he is equally conversant with choral repertoire.
Matvejeff has conducted a diversity of opera repertoire ranging from Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro and Aribert Reimann’s Lear to contemporary productions such as Kimmo Hakola’s Akseli with Jorma Hynninen in the title role, and Mikko Heiniö’s Eerik XIV. He has conducted concert performances of Parsifal with a cast featuring Klaus Florian Vogt and Karita Mattila at the Turku Music Festival and a run of Hansel and Gretel at Malmö Opera. At the Croatian National Theatre Ivan Zajc this season he conducts productions including Falstaff, and Elektra. Recent opera highlights include the world premiere of Aulis Sallinen’s Castle in the Water in Savonlinna.
A musical polymath, Matvejeff is also a pianist and composer. He made his concert debut as pianist at the age of 18 with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra under conductor Susanna Mälkki and has since toured the world in a recital partnership with soprano Karita Mattila. As a composer, Matvejeff has received commissions from the Finnish Chamber Orchestra and the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, for whom he wrote his Violin Concerto to celebrate the inauguration of the Helsinki Music Centre in September 2011. His passion for the human voice has led him to write a substantial amount of choral music, while recordings of his orchestral works Ad Astra and Cello Concerto Crossroads have been released on the Alba label.
Honorary Conductor Moshe Atzmon
Jyväskylä Sinfonia appointed Moshe Atzmon as the first Honorary Conductor of Jyväskylä Sinfonia on 16.11.2016 in Maestro's Heritage concert that was also the farewell concert of Atzmon in Jyväskylä. Atzmon served as the Principal Guest Conductor of Jyväskylä Sinfonia in 2014-2016. Moshe Atzmon conducted Jyväskylä Sinfonia for the first time in 2004 and after that, he has led the orchestra over ten times.
Moshe Atzmon has been Chief Conductor of the NDR Sinfonieorchester in Hamburg, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra (he is now their Conductor Laureate), Basel Orchestra Society, Aalborg Symphony Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the KBS Philharmonic Orchestra in Seoul, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Orchestre de Bretagne. He is also well-known both in the opera house and on the concert platform. He was General Music Director of Dortmund Opera for several years and has conducted at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Hamburg State Opera, Basel State Opera, Istanbul Opera, and Royal Danish Opera amongst others. Atzmon conducted in Finland for the first time in 1967, when he conducted Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra.
Moshe Atzmon has conducted in all the important music centres of the world working with many of the great orchestras, including the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Munich Philharmonic, and the major London Orchestras.
Moshe Atzmon was born in Hungary in 1931 where he began his musical education in Budapest. When he was young, his family emigrated to Israel where he continued at the Academies of Music in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem studying the cello, horn, conducting, and composition. After graduating he became a professional horn player before continuing his conducting studies in 1960 at London's Guildhall School of Music and working with the late Antal Dorati. Three years later, he took second prize at the Mitropoulos Conducting Competition in New York followed by the Leonard Bernstein Prize at Tanglewood and in 1964, he was awarded First Prize at the Liverpool International Conducting Competition.
Moshe Atzmon has made many recordings, principally for Deutsche Grammophon, Decca, EMI, and BIS.