Diego Matheuz

The Seiji Ozawa Music Academy (The Juku) in Kyoto (Japan), an educational project that aims at nurturing young musicians through opera, established in 2000 under the leadership of conductor Seiji Ozawa,has named Venezuelan conductor Diego Matheuz as Principal Conductor of its orchestra.

In March of this year Matheuz was invited by Ozawa to conduct the Academy Orchestra for the premiere of Die Fledermaus by Johann Strauss. « When I met Diego, I understood why Claudio Abbado trusted him so much: an honest and simple personality; a passion for music, and a commitment to devote time and energy to better music,” Ozawa writes in the welcome letter he sent Matheuz this week on the occasion of his appointment.

Ozawa added: “I watched him closely as he rehearsed day after day to put together a cohesive and skilled orchestra with young but talented students, with little experience, and most importantly, making each musician acts as a soloist. (…) The sound of the orchestra was evolving. His approach to music as education overlapped a lot with mine. It was the first time I wanted to try entrusting the Academy to a single director.”

At nearly 38 years, the Venezuelan was Principal Conductor, for 4 years, of the Teatro La Fenice, Venice (2011-15), and Principal Guest Conductor of the Mozart Orchestra, Bologna. Then, for 3 years, he was Principal Guest Conductor of the Melbourne Symphony, Australia.

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