Nathalie Stutzmann named as second ever female conductor of a major American orchestra
The French conductor and contralto has been named as the next music director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
Nathalie Stutzmann has been named as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra's next music director, becoming the second ever female conductor to lead a major American orchestra. She follows in the footsteps of Marin Alsop, who recently stepped down as music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
The French conductor will conduct her concert as music director designate with the orchestra tonight, before taking over form the orchestra's current music director Robert Spano next autumn. Her contract is set for an initial four-year term.
'Their devoted commitment to music touches my heart,' Stutzmann says of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra's musicians. 'They have beautiful open minds, and they love to work hard, to be challenged and to take the necessary risks to serve the music and bring the highest levels of emotion to their audience.'
Stutzmann currently holds positions as principal guest conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra and chief conductor of the Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra in Norway. She is particularly known for conducting 19th-century Romantic works, having studied under Jorma Panula and received mentorship from Seiji Ozawa and Simon Rattle.
A contralto as well as a conductor, Stutzmann has released over 80 recordings. Read our reviews of Nathalie Stutzmann's recordings here.
Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.