Jonathon Heyward


Chief Conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie


Jonathon Heyward is forging a career as one of the most exciting young conductors on the international scene. Winner of the 2015 Besançon International Conducting Competition, Jonathon was selected as a Los Angeles Philharmonic Dudamel Conducting Fellow for the 2017-2018 season, later stepping in to make his subscription debut with Hilary Hahn as part of the orchestra’s Bernstein @ 100 Celebration at Walt Disney Concert Hall. The LA Times declared that he had “forged a seamless connection among the music, the orchestra, and the audience” and that “his concert augurs great things to come”.

Currently in his first year as a Chief Conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, Jonathon recently completed three years as Assistant Conductor of the Hallé Orchestra, conducting his first subscription concert with Benjamin Grosvenor in 2018. Other notable moments with the ensemble include: a 200th birthday concert for the orchestra’s founder Sir Charles Hallé; a finalist nomination for Young Creative of the Year at the Manchester Culture Awards 2018, in recognition of his extensive community outreach work and commitment to music education as Music Director of the Hallé Youth Orchestra; and a “roaringly bold account” (Bachtrack) of Shostakovich’s thrilling Leningrad Symphony, marking Jonathon’s debut at the Manchester International Festival and culmination of his tenure in Manchester.

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“Heyward forged a seamless connection among the music, the orchestra and the audience.

“[Heyward] knew when to lead and when to follow, effortlessly balancing his roles as a natural showman and sensitive collaborator in service to the music.”

Rick Schultz

Los Angeles Times, Dec 2017

“Heyward demonstrated a level of confidence and musical intelligence that belied his youth.

“At the same time, Heyward tirelessly shaped the sound, encouraging subtle refinements and using expressive gestures to blend and adjust the mix. He understood that Holst’s dazzling score isn’t just about the brassy climaxes — wonderfully prepared for here — but also homed in on its varieties of mystery and awe.

“A wealth of meaning without artifice, as spoken by a truly gifted artist.”

Thomas May

Memeteria, June 2019

More Reviews

“Throughout the entire performance Jonathon Heywood conducted himself with notable discipline, switching from tiny hand movements to large expression of his upper body like it was second nature to him” 

Voice Mag, 2019


“On the podium, Jonathon Heyward, assistant conductor at the Hallé, made his own mark. He drew poised playing from the Chineke! musicians, first in Elgar’s Serenade for Strings and then in Mozart’s Symphony No 29 in A, the irrepressible bounce of its finale’s dotted rhythms every bit as spirited as the composer intended.”

The Guardian, 2017

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