John Wilson

A charismatic figure on the concert stage, John Wilson is known for the vivid nature of his interpretations and is applauded repeatedly for the rich and colourful sounds that he draws from orchestras in repertoire ranging from the core classical through to the twentieth century.

An outstanding communicator and a recognised builder of audiences, Wilson has developed long-term affiliations with many of the UK’s major orchestras, enjoying particularly close relationships with the Philharmonia, BBC Philharmonic and BBC Scottish Symphony orchestras. He is Principal Conductor of the Royal Northern Sinfonia and Principal Conductor of the RTÉ Concert Orchestra, Dublin.

Highlights of Wilson’s 2015/16 season include the continuation of his Vaughan Williams symphony cycle with the Philharmonia Orchestra at London’s Royal Festival Hall, several concerts with the City of Birmingham Symphony, three concerts with the Royal Northern Sinfonia as part of the Sage Gateshead’s Classic FM Concert Series in a range of repertoire by Smetana, Rimsky-Korsakov, Elgar amongst others, and a performance and recording of Copland’s Organ Symphony with the BBC Philharmonic. Further afield he makes his debut with Sydney Symphony Orchestra in two contrasting programmes, one celebrating the great Hollywood classics and the other including Vaughan Williams’s Second Symphony.

Wilson made his operatic debut in 2010 with Gilbert and Sullivan’s Ruddigore at Opera North, and with the Philharmonia Orchestra he has conducted concert performances of Léhar’s The Merry Widow and Strauss’s Die Fledermaus. He has worked with some of the world’s finest singers, including Sir Thomas Allen, Joyce DiDonato, Simon Keenlyside and Renée Fleming and in the coming seasons he looks forward to his debut at Glyndebourne Opera.

Wilson has a catalogue of over 40 recordings the most recent of which is a disc of Elgar’s The Spirit of England and With Proud Thanksgiving with the Philharmonia Orchestra and London Symphony Chorus on SOMM. His next release will be a disc of ballet suites by Copland with the BBC Philharmonic on Chandos to be released in February 2016.

Born in Gateshead, England, John Wilson studied composition and conducting at the Royal College of Music, where he was taught by Joseph Horovitz and Neil Thomson and where he won all the major conducting prizes, and in 2011 was made a Fellow. In 1994, Wilson formed his own orchestra, the John Wilson Orchestra, dedicated to performing film music of Hollywood’s golden age. As well as making an extensive tour of the UK with them every autumn, he appears annually with the orchestra at the BBC Proms, appearing twice in 2015 with programmes featuring songs popularised by Frank Sinatra and a Bernstein retrospective. John Wilson and the John Wilson Orchestra record exclusively for Warner Classics (formerly EMI Classics) and their performances are broadcast regularly and radio and television.

John Wilson is represented by Intermusica worldwide.