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JoAnn Falletta is internationally celebrated as a vibrant ambassador for music and an inspiring artistic leader. An effervescent and exuberant figure on the podium, she has been praised by The Washington Post as having “Toscanini’s tight control over ensemble, Walter’s affectionate balancing of inner voices, Stokowski’s gutsy showmanship, and a controlled frenzy worthy of Bernstein.” Acclaimed by The New York Times as “one of the finest conductors of her generation,” she serves as the Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra and Principal Guest Conductor of the Brevard Music Center.
Recent guest conducting highlights include her a European tour with the Stuttgart Orchestra, return engagements with the Belgrade Philharmonic (Serbia), the Warsaw, Krakow, Detroit, Phoenix, Puerto Rico and Hawaii Symphony Orchestras as well as debuts with the Gothenburg Symphony, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Carnegie Hall, and a 13 city US tour with the Irish Chamber Orchestra and soloist James Galway.
Since stepping up to the podium as Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra in 1999, Maestro Falletta has been credited with bringing it to a new level of national and international prominence. During her tenure, the Orchestra’s budget has grown by 25 percent and subscriptions have reached record levels. Under her direction, the BPO is continuing its trajectory as one of the most recorded orchestras in America. In addition to receiving two Grammy awards and six nominations, Falletta and the BPO have garnered numerous ASCAP awards, including the top award for Adventurous Programming in 2011, 2013 and 2014, two acclaimed Carnegie Hall performances in 2004 and 2013, two highly successful Florida tours, the establishment of the orchestra’s own Beau Fleuve label, the founding of the JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition in partnership with WNED, and the national and international broadcast of BPO concerts on NPR’s Performance Today, SymphonyCast, and the European Broadcasting Union. Other recent broadcasts include a national PBS televised special, Bernstein’s Ode to Freedom featuring Ms. Falletta as host, and a PBS special of the Four Seasons with Mark O’Connor and Catherine Cho.
The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s
Falletta is the recipient of many of the most prestigious conducting awards including the Seaver/National Endowment for the Arts Conductors Award for exceptionally gifted American conductors, the coveted Stokowski Competition and the Toscanini, Ditson and Bruno Walter Awards for conducting, as well as the American Symphony Orchestra League’s prestigious John S. Edwards Award. She has introduced over 500 works by American composers, including 110 world premieres. Hailing her as a “leading force for the music of our time,” the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers has honored JoAnn Falletta with twelve ASCAP awards, recognizing her work as a conductor, communicator, recording artist, audience builder, champion of American composers and distinguished musical citizen. Ms. Falletta served as a Member of the National Council on the Arts, the advisory body of the National Endowment for the Arts.
Few artists are as important to the fabric of their communities as JoAnn Falletta. She was named Buffalo’s Most Influential Civic Leader, Buffalo and Erie County’s Artist of the Year, was inducted into the Buffalo Music Hall of Fame, and was presented with the Chancellor Charles P. Norton Medal, the University of Buffalo’s highest award. She received the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies Award for outstanding leadership in the Marcel Tyberg Musical Legacy project. The JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition has brought international acclaim and attention to the classical guitar, the Buffalo region and the BPO. Falletta is a member of the Western New York Women’s Hall of Fame, and received the Human Relations Award from the Buffalo/Niagara Chapter of the American Jewish Committee. In Virginia, she earned a star on Norfolk’s Legends of Music Walk of Fame in recognition of her effect on the appreciation of classical music in Hampton Roads and Virginia, was named Norfolk’s Downtowner of the Year and received the Virginia Women in History Award.
Falletta is a strong advocate and mentor for young professional and student musicians. She has led seminars for women conductors for the League of American Orchestras, established a unique collaboration between the BPO and Mannes College to give up-and-coming conductors professional experience with a leading American orchestra, and has great success working with young musicians, guest conducting the orchestras of many of the top conservatories, including Curtis, Juilliard, Mannes and The Manhattan School and summer programs at Interlochen, Round Top and Brevard, among others. In 2015, JoAnn will be one of the first conductors to work with the newly formed innovative, international educational orchestra created by Leon Botstein and Bard College.
Earlier discs of note include Burchfield Gallery, with music by Morton Gould and Jean Sibelius (BPO), Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, Behzad Ranjbaran’s Persian Trilogy with the London Symphony (Delos), The Music of Frederick Converse (Naxos) and Pictures at a Gallery by the Buffalo Philharmonic (Beau Fleuve), The American Clarinet, with the Czech National Symphony (Albany), Schubert’s Guitar (Koch), featuring Ms. Falletta as guitarist and arranger, Impressions of French Music and Rhapsodie with the Buffalo Philharmonic, and Peter and the Wolf and the Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, with the Virginia Symphony and celebrities from National Public Radio, released on the NPR label.
Ms. Falletta made three recordings of works by women composers with the Women’s Philharmonic. Of special interest is her recording of works by Fanny Mendelssohn, Clara Schumann, Lili Boulanger and Germaine Tailleferre, which received a Best Classical Recording award from the National Association of Independent Record Distributors and a Most Creative Programming award from Classic CD Magazine. Additional recordings feature music by Poulenc, Ravel, Moross, Shulamit Ran, Elinor Armer and John Luther Adams.
Ms. Falletta served as Principal Conductor of the Ulster Orchestra in Northern Ireland from
Ms. Falletta received her undergraduate degree from the Mannes College of Music, her master’s and doctorate degrees from The Juilliard School, and in addition, has been awarded eleven honorary doctorates.
JoAnn Falletta is internationally celebrated as a vibrant ambassador for music, an inspiring artistic leader, and a champion of American symphonic music. An effervescent and exuberant figure on the podium, she has been praised by The Washington Post as having “Toscanini’s tight control over ensemble, Walter’s affectionate balancing of inner voices, Stokowski’s gutsy showmanship, and a controlled frenzy worthy of Bernstein.” Acclaimed by The New York Times as “one of the finest conductors of her generation”, she serves as the Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the Brevard Music Center and music advisor to the Hawaii Symphony.
She has guest conducted over a hundred orchestras in North America, and many of the most prominent orchestras in Europe, Asia, South America and Africa. Her North America guest conducting appearances have included the orchestras of Philadelphia, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Seattle, San Diego, Montreal, Toronto and the National Symphony and international appearances have included the London Symphony, Czech Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Korean Broadcast Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, China National Symphony, Shanghai Symphony, Liverpool Philharmonic, Manchester BBC Philharmonic, Scottish BBC orchestra, Orchestra National de Lyon and Mannheim Orchestra among others. Ms. Falletta’s summer activities have taken her to numerous music festivals including Aspen, Tanglewood, the Hollywood Bowl, Wolf Trap, Mann Center, Meadow Brook, OK Mozart Festival, Grand Teton, Eastern, Peninsula and Brevard Festival.
Falletta is the recipient of many of the most prestigious conducting awards including the Seaver/National Endowment for the Arts Conductors Award, the coveted Stokowski Competition, and the Toscanini, Ditson and Bruno Walter Awards for conducting, as well as the American Symphony Orchestra League’s prestigious John S. Edwards Award. She is an ardent champion of music of our time, introducing over 500 works by American composers, including more than 110 world premieres. Hailing her as a “leading force for the music of our time”, she has been honored with twelve ASCAP awards. Ms. Falletta served as a Member of the National Council on the Arts during both the George W Bush and Obama administrations.
Her growing discography, which currently includes over 90 titles, consists of recordings with the Buffalo Philharmonic, Czech National Symphony, English Chamber Orchestra, Lithuanian National Symphony London Symphony, Long Beach Symphony, Netherlands Radio Orchestra, New Zealand Symphony, Philadelphia Philharmonia, Prague Philharmonic, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra, Virginia Symphony and the Women’s Philharmonic. Her recording with the Buffalo Philharmonic and soprano, Hila Plitmann of Corigliano’s Mr. Tambourine Man received two Grammy Awards in 2009. Grammy nominated discs include her recordings with the Buffalo Philharmonic of Tyberg’s Symphony No. 3, Corigliano’s Red Violin, Schubert’s Death and the Maiden, Strauss’s Rosenkavalier, and Dohnanyi’s Variations on a Nursery Song. In her role as Principal conductor of the Ulster Orchestra from
The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s
Since stepping up to the podium as Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra in the fall of 1999, Maestro Falletta has been credited with bringing the Philharmonic to a new level of national and international prominence. This season, the BPO will once again be featured on national broadcasts of NPR’s Performance Today and SymphonyCast, and international broadcasts through the European Broadcasting Union.
Under Falletta’s direction, the VSO has risen to celebrated artistic heights. The VSO, which made critically acclaimed debuts at the Kennedy Center and New York’s Carnegie Hall under Falletta and entered into their first multinational recording agreement with Naxos, performs classics, pops and family concert series in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Newport News and Williamsburg.
In addition to her current posts with the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Virginia Symphony, Brevard Music Center and Hawaii Symphony, Ms. Falletta has held the positions of principal conductor of the Ulster Orchestra, principal guest conductor of the Phoenix Symphony, music director of the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra, associate conductor of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and music director of the Denver Chamber Orchestra.
Ms. Falletta received her undergraduate degree from the Mannes College of Music in New York and her master’s and doctorate degrees from The Juilliard School.