27. February 2015

Daníel Bjarnason new Artist-in-residence

Daníel Bjarnason has been appointed Artist-in-Residence with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, where he will fill a number of roles as conductor, composer, member of the ISO programme selection committee, and leader of the composers' workshop.

A number of exciting projects are on the horizon for Daníel and the ISO. At the 2015 Reykjavík Arts Festival, Daníel will conduct the Icelandic premiere of Benjamin Britten's opera Peter Grimes. The large-scale concert production of Peter Grimes, scheduled for 22 May, is a collaborative effort of the ISO, the Icelandic Opera, Harpa, and the Reykjavík Arts Festival. Next season Daníel will conduct the ISO a number of times at subscription concerts, family concerts, and school concerts, as well as touring Iceland with the orchestra in October.

A new work from Daníel, commissioned by the ISO and the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, will be premiered in the United States in March. The Icelandic premiere is scheduled for November, with the composer on the podium.

“Daníel is an unusually versatile artist with a deep understanding – both as a composer and as a conductor – of the symphony orchestra as a musical instrument. He has been successful internationally and has worked with some of the best and most respected orchestras and conductors in the world. We expect wonderful things from our collaboration with him and consider ourselves very lucky to work with him,” says Arna Kristín Einarsdóttir, Managing Director of the ISO.

Daníel Bjarnason completed a diploma in piano performance from the FÍH Music School in spring 2000. That same year he began studying composition and orchestral conducting at the Reykjavík College of Music, receiving diplomas in both disciplines in spring 2003. Daníel pursued further studies in orchestral conducting at University of Music Freiburg in Germany from 2004 through 2007, graduating with high honours.

Daníel has collaborated with and had his compositions performed by a number of orchestras, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Residentie Orkest, Ulster Orchestra, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia, and Sinfonietta Cracovia, in addition to the Icelandic Opera Orchestra and the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. He has also worked with a large number of conductors, including Gustavo Dudamel, James Conlon, John Adams, André de Ridder, Ilan Volkov, and Alexander Mickelthwate, and has collaborated with groups such as Sigur Rós, Hjaltalín, and Efterklang.

Daníel has released three recordings on the Bedroom Community label: Processions (2010), Solaris (2012), and Over Light Earth (2013), which received the Icelandic Music Award for the best classical CD of the year in 2013. Daníel has won a number of prizes and awards, including the Icelandic Music Award, the Edda Award, the Kraum Award, and a grant from the Kristján Eldjárn Memorial Fund.