Charles Dutoit is Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in London. He recently celebrated his thirty-year artistic collaboration with the Philadelphia Orchestra, where he holds the title of Conductor Laureate. With that orchestra he was previously chief conductor from 2008 to 2012, and music director of the orchestra’s series at the Mann Music Center and the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. In 2009, he became Music Director of the Verbier Festival Orchestra. He is Music Director Emeritus of the NHK Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo, which he previously served in roles as principal conductor and music director. Mr. Dutoit was artistic director of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra for twenty-five years and he has also served as music director of the Orchestre National de France.
Mr. Dutoit collaborates frequently with the orchestras of Chicago, Boston, New York, and Los Angeles, and he is also a regular guest on the stages of London, Berlin, Paris, Munich, Moscow, Sydney, Beijing, Hong Kong, and Shanghai, among others. When still in his early twenties, Mr. Dutoit was invited by Herbert von Karajan to conduct the Vienna State Opera. He has since conducted at Covent Garden, the Metropolitan Opera, Deutsche Oper in Berlin, the Rome Opera, and Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. He made his Davies Symphony Hall debut in 1981 leading the Montreal Symphony, and he led his first concerts with the San Francisco Symphony in 1985. He has returned as part of the SFS Great Performers Series with the Pittsburgh Symphony, the Orchestre National de France, and the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Mr. Dutoit’s interest in mentoring young musicians has led to positions as music director with the Sapporo Pacific Music Festival and Miyazaki International Music Festival in Japan as well as the Canton International Summer Music Academy in Guangzhou. He holds honorary doctorates from the universities of McGill, Montreal, and Laval, and the Curtis Institute of Music. Mr. Dutoit’s more than 200 recordings for Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, EMI, Philips, and Erato have garnered multiple awards and distinctions including two Grammys. He is a Commander of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres of France and Grand Officer of the Ordre National du Québec. He has been named an honorary citizen of the city of Philadelphia, and he also was invested as an Honorary Officer of the Order of Canada, the country’s highest award of merit. In 2014 he was given the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Classical Music Awards. A globetrotter motivated by his passion for history and archaeology, political science, art and architecture, he has traveled in all the nations of the world.