Born in Romania, Ion Marin studied composition, piano, and conducting at the George Enescu Music Academy and Mozarteum Salzburg. In 1986, he defected from Romania and started a new life in Vienna, where he became resident conductor of the Vienna State Opera. Since 2014–15, he has served as Principal Guest Conductor of the Hamburg Symphony, resident orchestra of the Elbphilharmonie. In 2019, he was named Artistic Director of the newly founded Philharmonic Orchestra of the European Union. He makes his San Francisco Symphony debut at this performance.
This season, Mr. Marin collaborates with pianist Chick Corea on a concerto tour with destinations as varied as Shanghai Symphony Hall and the Royal Opera House of Muscat. Recent appearances focused on the music of Mahler in concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra, Saint Petersburg Philharmonic, and Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Mr. Marin has been a regular guest at the world’s major opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera, Teatro alla Scala, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Bavarian State Opera and Opéra National de Paris, and he has conducted the Berlin Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Staatskapelle Dresden, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Orchestre National de France, and Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia. He has also appeared regularly in Japan with the NHK Symphony Orchestra and the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra. He regularly collaborates with artists such as Martha Argerich, Yo-Yo Ma, Frank Peter Zimmermann, Maxim Vengerov, Gidon Kremer, Hélène Grimaud, and Angela Gheorghiu. He also worked with Isaac Stern, Mstislav Rostropovich, and Alexis Weissenberg.
Mr. Marin’s discography of more than forty titles on the Deutsche Grammophon, Decca, EMI, Sony, and Philips labels have earned him three Grammy nominations, the Diapason d'Or, the German Recording Critics’ Award, and an ECHO Klassik award. Recent recordings include a concert with Renée Fleming and the Berlin Philharmonic at the Waldbühne, Beethoven’s Violin Concerto with David Garrett and the Royal Philharmonic, and Bruch's violin concertos with Guy Braunstein and the Bamberg Symphony.
In 2012, Mr. Marin initiated the Cantus Mundi and the Symphonia Mundi projects in Romania, dedicated to the education and social integration of the country’s disadvantaged children through music.