Kazushi Ono


Kazushi Ono’s musical influence and vision span and connect continents and cultures, with roles as Music Director of Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra (TMSO) and Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya (OBC) and as Artistic Director of the New National Theatre Tokyo (NNTT). He has toured Europe extensively with TMSO, visiting six cities in eleven days in 2015, and brought OBC to Japan in 2019 with a new production of Turandot for NNTT, as well as orchestral concerts.

He is passionate about new creation and has commissioned a large number of works and projects, such as Hibiki, by Mark-Anthony Turnage, who made his debut at Tokyo's Suntory Hall before performing at the 2017 BBC Proms. Asters, by Akira Nishimura (2019), i A Dream of Armageddon, by Dai Fujikura (2020).

Ono established himself internationally with orchestras such as London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Brussels Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Seoul Philharmonic and Houston Symphony Orchestra, where his performance of Russian repertoire was described by the Houston Chronicle as ‘a first-rate concert steeped in stormy emotions, fragile beauty, and wide- screen grandeur’.

From 2008 to 2017, Ono was principal conductor of the Lyon National Opera, and gained international fame with iconic performances of works such as The player, by Prokofiev; Lulu, de Berg, and Parsifal, by Wagner. Among the latest operatic successes are  Jeanne d'Arc au Bûcher, by Honegger, directed by Romeo Castellucci (Ono's last production in Lyon, which premiered at the Teatro Real de la Monnaie in Brussels); premieres it in 2017 from Der Mieter (The tenant); of Arnulf Hermann, at the Frankfurt Opera, i The angel of fire, by Prokofiev, in Warsaw and at the Aix-en-Provence Festival (directed by Mariusz Treliński). He has recently been appointed new principal conductor of the Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he will hold from the 22-23 season.

Before being appointed in Lyon, Kazushi was Music Director of Theatre Royal de la Monnaie (2002–2008), taking up the baton from Antonio Pappano. In 2017, he was awarded ‘Officier de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres’ by French cultural minister Françoise Nyssen, adding to the prestigious Asahi Prize in January 2015, for his contribution to the development and progress of Japanese society.

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