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Michail Jurowski was born in Moscow in 1945, the son of the composer Vladimir Jurowski and grandson of the conductor David Block. His sons Vladimir and Dmitri are also internationally renowned conductors. Michail Jurowski grew up in the circle of internationally acclaimed artists of the former Soviet Union such as D. Ojstrach, M. Rostropovitch, L. Kogan, E. Gilels, and A. Chatchaturjan. Dmitri Shostakovich was a close family friend, and he and Michail not only spoke often but would also play four-hand piano pieces together. Such experiences had a huge influence on the young musician, and it is therefore no coincidence that today Jurowski is one of the greatest interpreters of Shostakovich’s music. From 1978, Jurowski was regular guest conductor at the Komische Oper Berlin. In 1989 he left the USSR with his family, and was offered a permanent post with the Dresden Semperoper. Other titled positions have included: General Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Northwest German Philharmonic Orchestra, Chief Conductor of the Leipzig Opera and Chief Conductor of WDR Radio Symphony Orchestra in Cologne. He is currently the Principal Guest Conductor of the Tonkünstler Orchestra of Lower Austria, a position he has held since 2003.

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Born in Moscow in 1945, Michail Jurowski is the son of the composer Wladimir Jurowski and grandson of the conductor David Block. His sons Vladimir and Dmitri are also internationally renowned conductors. Michail Jurowski grew up in the circle of internationally acclaimed artists of the former Soviet Union such as Ojstrach, Rostropovitch, Kogan, Gilels, and Chatchaturjan. Dmitri Shostakovich was a close family friend and he and Michail not only spoke often but would also play four-hand piano pieces together. Such experiences had a huge influence on the young musician and it is therefore no coincidence that today Michail Jurowski is one of the leading interpreters of Shostakovich’s music. In 2012 Michail Jurowski was awarded the third International Shostakovich Prize by the Shostakovich Gohrisch Foundation.

 

Michail Jurowski was educated at the Moscow Conservatoire, where he studied conducting under Leo Ginsburg and music science under Alexei Kandinsky. During his studies he assisted Gennady Rozhdestvensky at the National Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra of Moscow. While still a resident in Russia he conducted the Music Theatre of Stanislavski and Nemirovich-Danchenko in Moscow and during his last years in the Soviet Union frequently conducted performances at the Bolshoi Theatre.

 

From 1978 Michail Jurowski was regular guest conductor at the Komische Oper Berlin and in 1989 he left the USSR with his family and was offered a permanent post with the Dresden Semperoper. Other titled positions have included: General Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Northwest German Philharmonic Orchestra; Chief Conductor of Leipzig Opera; Chief Conductor of WDR Rundfunkorchester in Cologne; Principal Guest Conductor of the Tonkünstler Orchestra of Lower Austria.

 

As a guest conductor Michail Jurowski has led the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Dresden Philharmonic, Staatskapelle Dresden, Oslo Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, Orquestra Sinfónica do Porta Casa da Música,  São Paulo Symphony and Stavanger Symphony orchestras among others. In addition he works with the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra at least twice a year.

 

Recent Opera and Ballet highlights have included a hugely successful debut at Opera de Paris conducting Mussorgsky’s Khovantchina, Götterdämmerung in Dortmund, Tchaikovsky’s The Sleeping Beauty at the Norske Opera in Oslo, Eugene Onegin at the Teatro Lirico in Cagliarias, as well as a new production of Respighi’s Marie Victoir, the revival of Un Ballo in Maschera at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, a very successful new production of Prokofiev’s The love of three oranges at the Grand Theatre in Geneva with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, critically acclaimed Glazunov’s Raymonda at La Scala, with the sets and costumes being replicated from M. Petipa’s original 1898 production in St. Petersburg, a new production of Romeo and Juliet at Zurich Opera and Prokofiev’s Fiery Angel at the Bolshoi Theatre, which marked his return to the Russian rostrum in 2012. His opera repertoire includes Mozart, Verdi, Puccini, Weber, Wagner, Smetana, R. Strauss and Britten, as well as Russian composers Glinka, Dargomyzhsky, Mussorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, Prokofiev and Shostakovich.

 

Michail Jurowski’s return to the Russian stage in 2012 generated much press interest, and he then went on to conduct two televised events organized by the Russian Ministry of Culture. He also went on tour with the State Academic Symphony Orchestra of Russia in Germany and at the Santander International Music Festival, and closed the season of the Russian Philharmonic Orchestra in Moscow. This season he returns to the Bolshoi to conduct another run of Fiery Angel and will also lead the State Academic Symphony Orchestra in two different programmes at the Grand Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire and at Moscow’s International House of Music, as well as debuting with the St Petersburg Philharmonic.

 

The 13/14 season will see Michail Jurowski continue to work at the highest level, debuting with the London, Warsaw and St Petersburg philharmonic orchestras. He will also conduct the Dresden Staatskapelle at the International Shostakovich Festival in Gohrisch, Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia, Lübeck Philharmonic, Dresden Philharmonic’s New Year’s concerts, the Tonkünstler Orchestra of Lower Austria, the Norwegian Opera Orchestra, Monte Carlo Philharmonic and the New Israeli Opera Orchestra, in addition to his regular guest conducting weeks at Norrköping and Stavanger symphony orchestras and a revival of the lauded Romeo and Juliet with the Zurich Opera.

 

Besides televised concerts and radio recordings in Stuttgart, Cologne, Dresden, Oslo, Norrköping, Hannover and Berlin, Jurowski has just recorded with L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande and has conducted various CD recordings including film music, Shostakovich’s opera The Gamblers, Shostakovich’s entire vocal symphonic pieces, Rimsky-Korsakov’s opera Christmas Eve, as well as orchestral pieces by Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Reznicek, Meyerbeer, Lehár, Kálmán, Nicolai, Rangström, Pettersen-Berger, Grieg, Svensen, Kantcheli and many others. This season will see the release of his latest CD on cpo, featuring orchestral works by his father, Wladimir Jurowski.

 

In 1992 and 1996 Jurowski won the German Record Critics' Prize and in 2001 he received a Grammy nomination for 3 CD productions of Orchestral Music by Rimsky-Korsakov with the RSB Orchestra.

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Reviews

"...The baton drives with relentless accuracy... but the soul of the music is never forgotten. Jurowski epitomises the synthesis of precision and lyricism."

Benedikt Leßmann, Leipziger Volkszeitung

"Jurowski conducted precisely and powerfully, building up the colossus of the incredible orchestral Poem of Ecstasy and Prometheus / The Poem of Fire stone by stone. The conductor kept a fairly wide tempo which brought out the richness of the orchestration and instrumental brilliance"

Pierre-Jean Tribot, Res Musica

"Michail Jurowski... was the mastermind behind the event, conducting the works with consummate skill and a commanding, bear-like presence. "

Chris Garlick, bachtrack

"★★★★★ One of the season’s most rewarding and unforgettable concerts."

Hilary Finch, The Times

"Jurowski senior definitely had the measure of the piece, holding together the complex mix of improvisation and notated passages. He and the orchestra, who were clearly enjoying themselves, never flinched from being lurid and brazen when needed, particularly in the riotous second movement."

Chris Garlick, Bachtrack

"How hard and tirelessly the LPO, brass especially, worked to terrorize and humour us. The theatrics of Jurowski senior may have been deadpan – hands in pockets when the baton wasn't needed – but you see where his son gets his absolutely clear and definitive beat from, every entry elegantly cued, and he shaped the multipart string slow movement towards a shattering climax and back."

David Nice, The Arts Desk

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Discography