Friday, December 18, 2009

Northern Sinfonia chooses Mario Venzago

Mario Venzago, the former music director of the Indianapolis Symphony has been selected to lead the Northern Sinfonia orchestra, which is based in northeastern England at the Sage Gateshead complex. Venzago was forced out of his position at Indianapolis by President and CEO Simon Crookall for reasons that have remained unclear.

Here's more from the report in Musical America (which requires a subscription):

The Swiss born artist joins a conducting roster that includes Thomas Zehetmair, music director; Simon Halsey, principal conductor of choral projects and John Wilson, also principal conductor.

The Sinfonia, based at the Sage Gateshead complex in the northeast of England, traces its origins to 1958 and lays claim to being the first “permanent” chamber orchestra in Great Britain. Simon Clugston, performance program director of the Sage Gateshead, commented that Venzago had had an “instant rapport” with the orchestra and that the conductor had “always impressed us with the depth of his musicianship and the breadth of his repertoire.”

Venzago is conductor laureate of the Basel Symphony Orchestra and principal guest of the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland Pfalz in Ludwigshafen, starting next season. He also guest conducts widely and is the former principal conductor of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra.