Pappano to succeed Rattle at the LSO

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Covent Garden’s Music Director crosses London to a new artistic home at the Barbican

Sir Antonio Pappano (Photo: Musacchio & Ianniello)
Sir Antonio Pappano (Photo: Musacchio & Ianniello)

Sir Antonio Pappano has been named the new Chief Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra from September 2024, assuming the title Chief Conductor Designate in September 2023 (succeeding Sir Simon Rattle who is departing to head the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra). Pappano steps down as Music Director of Royal House at the end July 2024. 

Pappano, who first conducted a concert with the LSO in 1997, said that since that debut ‘I have time and again been overwhelmed by the team spirit inherent in this fabulously talented group of musicians. The combination of a unique energy, flair and virtuosity has always set this orchestra apart. That I have been chosen as Chief Conductor is a dream come true and a most wonderful gift. I am humbled and excited to receive this honour and trust. I am committed to keeping London as my musical home and look forward to this most important journey that awaits me, full not only of discovery but also of continued exploration of technological and broadcast opportunities to convey the message of music to an ever greater audience.’

In making the announcement the LSO’s Managing Director Kathryn McDowell said that ‘with Tony, every concert performance is a memorable and special event. He is the dynamic life force that the LSO welcomes in the leading conductor role and I look forward to planning imaginative programmes with him for the LSO’s season in the Barbican and beyond. With his considerable gifts as communicator off the podium, on film and audio broadcast, we will be developing new digital and broadcast projects tapping into his well-established credentials in this sphere.’

Pappano has been Music Director of the Royal Opera House since 2002, the longest serving Music Director in its history, and Music Director of the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome since 2005. He has developed a close relationship with the LSO since he first conducted the Orchestra in a recording of Tosca in 1996. He has conducted over 70 LSO concerts and made three recordings on the LSO Live label, and a further six recordings on other labels. Pappano and the LSO’s EMI recording of Puccini’s La rondine was voted Gramophone’s Recording of the Year in 1997 and many of their recordings have been named Editor’s Choices.

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