Alexander Vedernikov

Chief Conductor – Odense Symphony Orchestra

Biography

Alexander Vedernikov will join the Royal Danish Opera as Chief Conductor Designate in the season 17/18, taking the role of Chief Conductor from September 2018.  Currently Chief Conductor of the Odense Symphony Orchestra in Denmark, Alexander has brought this orchestra to a new level of international recognition and is currently working on a three-year project to perform Wagner’s Ring Cycle in concert.

Alexander Vedernikov was Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Bolshoi Theatre from 2001 until 2009 and has been credited with rebuilding the Bolshoi Theatre’s historical reputation for artistic excellence, conducting Mussorgsky’s Khovanshchina and Boris Godunov (a new production in the original Mussorgsky orchestration), Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, Puccini’s Turandot, Prokofiev’s Cinderella, War and Peace and The Fiery Angel, Leonid Desyatnikov’s The Children of Rosenthal (world premiere, commissioned by the Bolshoi Theatre), Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman, Glinka’s Ruslan and Ludmilla, and Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur. Under his direction, the orchestra of the Bolshoi toured extensively, including a season of opera and ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 2006 (including The Fiery Angel and Boris Godunov), where the orchestra in particular was singled out for its exceptional playing.  Opera and symphonic performances at La Scala were equally successful.

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Reviews

“… Vedernikov inspired the musicians to discover their inner savage, propelling the most explosive sections with an elemental thrust. At the same time, in all that heat Vedernikov still balanced and shaped textures and phrases with a manicurist’s precision. The woodwinds’ introduction, wondrously virile, told us that. Through all the rhythmic pandemonium the ensemble sense was terrifyingly exact, making the couple of brass fluffs insignificant, flies on a lion’s back.”

Geoff Brown

TheTimes.co.uk

“… But the lion’s share of the praise goes to the orchestra and conductor Alexander Vedernikov. Exhilarating from beginning to end, his was an interpretation full of controlled ecstasy and exquisitely blended colours.”

Hannah Nepil

Financial Times

More Reviews

“… Vedernikov inspired the musicians to discover their inner savage, propelling the most explosive sections with an elemental thrust. At the same time, in all that heat Vedernikov still balanced and shaped textures and phrases with a manicurist’s precision. The woodwinds’ introduction, wondrously virile, told us that. Through all the rhythmic pandemonium the ensemble sense was terrifyingly exact, making the couple of brass fluffs insignificant, flies on a lion’s back.”

Geoff Brown, TheTimes.co.uk 

“… But the lion’s share of the praise goes to the orchestra and conductor Alexander Vedernikov. Exhilarating from beginning to end, his was an interpretation full of controlled ecstasy and exquisitely blended colours.”

Hannah Nepil, Financial Times 

“Alexander Vedernikov conducted brilliantly, and the lurid colours and goose-pimple glissandi of the orchestra were exceptionally vivid.”

Anna Picard, The Independent 

“The new cast of Eugene Onegin, the season opener at the Met, has weighed in. Turns out — hooray! — they’re a troupe of heavyweights, especially as conducted by debuting Alexander Vedernikov, who appears to have Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky deeply embedded in his DNA.”

David Finkle, The Huffington Post 

“The Liszt made for a grand opening to the concert. Vedernikov’s fluid, expressive style of direction elicited a powerful and intense performance by the orchestra. The climax came at full power from the orchestra to produce a majestic lead-in to the Sibelius. ”

Andre S. Hughes, South Bend Tribune Review 

“Vedernikov relishes detail and adds an edge to the music he conducts (aided by a lucid and expressive technique), which came into its own in Tchaikovsky 4, the opening brassy ‘fate’ motif grandly stated, Vedernikov keeping the opening movement on the move without forcing the pace, tempo- and dynamic-dovetailing linking the chains persuasively ”

ClassicalSource.com 

“In this utterly compelling (63-minute) performance, Vedernikov brought unequivocal shape and direction to a Symphony that can seem overblown and empty; not a bit of that here as he lived the music, sometimes stood back from it, alternating a mix of ‘proper’ conducting with something off the cuff, and in doing so aligning himself to the charismatic and maverick Rozhdestvensky. Certainly Vedernikov has a formed a close rapport with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, magnificently responsive here, with future appearances from this estimable conductor keenly anticipated. ”

Colin Anderson, ClassicalSource.com 

“The conductor Alexander Vedernikov may have adopted a broad-brush approach to the latter work, but as a former music director of the Bolshoi, he was certainly at home in this music. And the main work itself? Vedernikov’s Rite had powerful individuality. Though not short of virtuosity, which the BBCSO delivered with trademark ease, it stood out for its melancholic tone, with even the big orchestral howls carrying unusual anguish. A characterful conductor, Vedernikov supplied his own wild-man choreography on the podium, very different from Nijinsky’s contribution, which Stravinsky later recalled as “the knock-kneed and long-braided Lolitas jumping up and down”.”

John Allison, Telegraph 

“This last in the series featured the First Symphony, and a rousing performance it was, capturing the young Sibelius’s rumbustiousness as he set off on his epic symphonic odyssey. The Russian conductor Alexander Vedernikov, who had opened the evening with a swaggering account of Shostakovich’s suite from The Bolt, threw himself into the symphony with an enthusiasm that swept up orchestra and audience.”

Andrew Clark, Financial Times