Erik Nielsen

Conductor

Management

Jonathan Groves
jg@grovesartists.com

Fiona Wells
fw@grovesartists.com

Groves Artists represents Erik Nielsen worldwide

Biography

A conductor equally at home in opera and in concert, Erik Nielsen has been Chief Conductor of the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra (Bilbao Orkesta Sinfonikoa) since 2015, and served as Music Director of the Theatre Basel from 2016-2018, where he continues to be a regular guest conductor of the Sinfonieorchester Basel. He has also had a decade-long association with the Frankfurt Opera, starting as Korrepetitor (pianist) and later as a Kapellmeister from 2008-2012, amassing a large repertoire from Monteverdi to Lachenmann. Prior to moving to Frankfurt, Nielsen was a harpist in the Berlin Philharmonic’s Orchester-Akademie.

 

Highlights of Nielsen’s 20/21 season include his debut with the Dutch National Opera leading the Rotterdam Philharmonic in new production of Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex paired with the world premiere of From ‘Antigone’ by composer Samy Moussa, debuts with the Galicia Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Tyrolean Festival Erl, and his return to Munich’s Bayerische Staatsoper in Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos.

 

Recent engagements include Krenek’s Karl V for the Bayerische Staatsoper; Oedipus RexIl prigioniero and Pelléas et Mélisande at the Semper Oper Dresden; Peter Grimes and Trojahn’s Oreste at the Opernhaus Zürich; Billy Budd and Lachenmann’s Das Mädchen mit den Schwefelhölzern in Frankfurt; Usandizaga’s Mendi Mendiyan; Bach’s St. John’s Passion and Salome in Bilbao; and The Rake’s Progress in Budapest; in addition to concerts in Oslo, Manchester, Stockholm, Madrid, Strasbourg, Lisbon, Basel, Aspen Music Festival, and the Interlochen Center for the Arts.

 

A pianist since an early age, Erik Nielsen studied conducting at the Curtis Institute of Music and received his bachelor’s degree in both oboe and harp performance at The Juilliard School. He was the 2009 winner of the Sir Georg Solti Conducting Fellowship awarded by the Solti Foundation U.S.

Reviews

  • Singing the Praises of Greed and Naked Capitalism

    He drew dynamic playing from the excellent orchestra and seemed at home in a challenging score that blurs distinctions between opera, musical theater and 1920s German cabaret, evoking everything from Bach fugues to the foxtrot, from medieval chant to the tango, from Stravinsky orchestral barbarism to jazzy banjo and saxophone.

    Anthony Tommasini The New York Times
  • Erik Nielsen’s leadership of the concentrated orchestra was masterly…. The awestruck audience had held their breath for two hours, sharing the suffering on stage – a rare, unanimous storm of applause broke the tension at the end of the work.

    Culture Neue Presse

News

  • Erik Nielsen to make his debut for the Bavarian State Opera Munich
    09.01.19

    Erik Nielsen to make his debut for the Bavarian State Opera Munich

  • Groves artists double in Basel
    24.08.16

    Groves artists double in Basel

  • Erik Nielsen appointed Chief Conductor of Bilbao Symphony Orchestra
    12.12.14

    Erik Nielsen appointed Chief Conductor of Bilbao Symphony Orchestra

  • Erik Nielsen appointed Music Director of the Theater Basel from 2016/17
    29.10.14

    Erik Nielsen appointed Music Director of the Theater Basel from 2016/17

  • Erik Nielsen to make Zurich Opera Debut
    20.05.14

    Erik Nielsen to make Zurich Opera Debut

  • Erik Nielsen to conduct Verdi’s Forza del Destino in Luxembourg
    30.09.13

    Erik Nielsen to conduct Verdi’s Forza del Destino in Luxembourg