Nikolaj Szeps-Znaider

Nikolaj Szeps-Znaider begins his first season as music director of the Orchestre National de Lyon in September 2021. He conducted the orchestra’s 2019-20 season opening concerts and together they toured Russia in February 2020. Szeps-Znaider is a regular guest conductor of the world’s leading orchestras, including the Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Bamberg Symphony and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra.

After a successful debut conducting The Magic Flute at the Dresden Semperoper, Szeps-Znaider was immediately reinvited to conduct Der Rosenkavalier there in autumn 2019. The following season he returned to Dresden Semperoper for a revival of Der Rosenkavalier and makes his podium debut at the Royal Danish Opera with a new production of The Magic Flute.

Also a virtuoso violinist, Szeps-Znaider maintains his reputation as one of the world’s leading exponents of the instrument with a busy calendar of concerto and recital engagements. During the 19-20 season, he appeared as soloist with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre National de France and Konzerthausorchester Berlin, and performed the complete Beethoven Violin Sonatas with pianist Rudolf Buchbinder in Vienna’s Musikverein.

Szeps-Znaider enjoys a strong relationship with the London Symphony Orchestra, which he has worked with extensively as conductor and soloist. Together they recorded the complete Mozart violin concertos, directed from the violin by Szeps-Znaider, with the Strad magzine extolling his playing as “possibly among the most exquisite violin sound ever captured on disc.”

His extensive discography also includes the Nielsen Violin Concerto with Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic, the Elgar Concerto in B Minor with Sir Colin Davis and the Dresden Staatskapelle, award-winning recordings of the Brahms and Korngold concertos with Valery Gergiev and the Vienna Philharmonic, the Beethoven and Mendelssohn concertos with Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic, the Prokofiev Concerto No. 2 and Glazunov Concerto with Mariss Jansons and the Bavarian Radio Symphony, and the Mendelssohn Concerto on DVD with Riccardo Chailly and the Gewandhaus Orchestra. Szeps-Znaider also has recorded the complete works of Brahms for violin and piano with Yefim Bronfman.

Szeps-Znaider is passionate about supporting the next generation of musical talent, and is president of the Nielsen Competition, which takes place every three years in Odense, Denmark. He plays the Kreisler Guarnerius del Gesu 1741, on extended loan to him by the Royal Danish Theater through the generosity of the Velux Foundations, the Villum Fonden and the Knud Højgaard Foundation.

September 2020

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