Paavo Järvi – Music Director
«What music is capable of as art is subtle, but powerful. It touches our psyche, our whole being. This has to do with beauty and a shared experience. It touches the most human aspect in all of us – in a world of efficiency, productivity and structures that demand a great deal of us. We must create a counterbalance in this world, which we should encounter with humanity – with music, for example.»
Paavo Järvi studied percussion and conducting in his hometown Tallinn when Estonia was still part of the Soviet Union. However, his path out into the world was already mapped out. His father, Neeme Järvi, who is also a conductor, emigrated with his entire family to the United States in 1980.
Paavo Järvi continued his studies in Los Angeles, where his teachers included Leonard Bernstein. In 2001 he became Music Director of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra; to this day, he maintains links with the ensemble as Music Director Laureate. Cincinnati was the first of several important international postings: the United States were followed by Germany, France and Japan.
Just as he remains linked with these orchestras, he also cultivates connections with his homeland by supporting and promoting Estonian composers. In 2011, together with his father, he founded the Pärnu Music Festival and the Järvi Academy. The Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich maintains direct links with the Pärnu Music Festival through its Conductors’ Academy.
The new stimuli that Paavo Järvi has brought to Zurich are documented by his first joint recording projects with the ensemble.
In addition …
- He works as a guest conductor with orchestras such as the Berlin Philharmonic, the Philharmonia Orchestra London, the Staatskapelle Dresden and the New York Philharmonic.
- He has been Chief Conductor of the NHK Symphony Orchestra (Tokyo) since 2015.
- He is Artistic Director of the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen.
- He was Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Orchestre de Paris until 2016.
- He is Conductor Laureate of the Frankfurt Radio Symphony and Music Director Laureate of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra.
- He won an award for his interpretations of Beethoven in 2010, and the Opus Klassik Award as Conductor of the Year in 2019.