Edward Gardner - Principal Conductor Designate

'I can't wait to start!'

Edward Gardner was announced as the London Philharmonic Orchestra's Principal Conductor Designate in July 2019. He will become the Orchestra's Principal Conductor from September 2021, succeeding Vladimir Jurowski. His initial five-year contract will see him working with the Orchestra for at least 10 weeks per season, including our London season at the Royal Festival Hall, on international tours, and on our many Education & Community programmes. 

'If this is what Gardner and the LPO can achieve together, we have much to look forward to.’ 

The Guardian, October 2019 (Bartók, Walton & Nielsen at the Royal Festival Hall)

Chief Conductor of the Bergen Philharmonic since October 2015, Edward has led the orchestra on multiple international tours, and at the BBC Proms and Edinburgh International Festival. Also in demand as a guest conductor, the last two seasons have seen debuts with the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Wiener Symphoniker, and the Royal Opera House in a new production of Káťa Kabanová.

Edward will open the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2021/22 Royal Festival Hall season, returning for further concerts at the Royal Festival Hall and a tour of Germany and the UK. 2021/22 highlights with the Bergen Philharmonic include Verdi’s Macbeth in concert, a European tour, and celebrating Beethoven’s 250th anniversary with a two-week festival. Guest conducting highlights and projects rearranged due to COVID-19 will include performances with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago and Montreal symphony orchestras, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra. Edward also continues his longstanding collaborations with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, where he was Principal Guest Conductor from 2010–16, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra, whom he has conducted at both the First and Last Night of the BBC Proms.

'Gardner was a well-matched accompanist here, creating with the LPO a magic carpet of sound that transported the listener into more exotic territory.’ 

Bachtrack, April 2019 (Debussy, Saint-Saëns and Ravel at the Royal Festival Hall)

Music Director of English National Opera for ten years (2006–15), Edward also has an ongoing relationship with New York’s Metropolitan Opera, where he has conducted productions of La damnation de Faust, Carmen, Don Giovanni, Der Rosenkavalier and Werther. Elsewhere, he has conducted at La Scala, Chicago Lyric Opera, Glyndebourne Festival Opera and Opéra National de Paris.

A passionate supporter of young talent, Edward founded the Hallé Youth Orchestra in 2002 and regularly conducts the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. He has a close relationship with The Juilliard School and with the Royal Academy of Music, who appointed him their inaugural Sir Charles Mackerras Conducting Chair in 2014.

Born in Gloucester in 1974, Edward was educated at the University of Cambridge and the Royal Academy of Music. He went on to become Assistant Conductor of the Hallé and Music Director of Glyndebourne Touring Opera. His many accolades include being named Royal Philharmonic Society Award Conductor of the Year (2008), an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Opera (2009) and receiving an OBE for services to music in the Queen’s Birthday Honours (2012).