Versatility, musicality and technical precision, and above all a natural and passionate approach are trademark features of French conductor Ariane Matiakh. The daughter of two opera singers, she grew up in an exceptionally musical environment and learnt to play the piano at an early age. Later, she studied orchestral conducting in Vienna, where she also sang in the renowned Arnold Schoenberg Choir under conductors including Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Adam Fischer. Particularly formative experiences during her comprehensive training include the time she spent studying with Leopold Hager and Seiji Ozawa.
Her first appointment conducting in an opera house was at the Opéra et Orchestre de Montpellier, where she worked closely together with James Conlon, Armin Jordan, Emmanuel Krivine and Alain Altinoglu, among others. Subsequent engagements brought her to the Komische Oper Berlin, the Royal Swedish Opera in Stockholm, and to Amsterdam, Gothenburg, Graz, Nice, Strasbourg and Halle. In 2009, she was nominated “Discovery of the Year” by the most important music prize in France, the “Révélation des Victoires de la musique”.
„In the end - and this I learned from Harnoncourt - one cannot be certain about anything, it remains unprovable. The only option is to feel it, to create something beautiful with taste. This he taught me - to look the human side. ”Ariane Matiakh, VAN Magazin, September 2018
Today, Ariane Matiakh’s repertoire covers opera and ballet, a wide variety of symphonic works, contemporary compositions and baroque music.
She often appears as guest conductor with leading ensembles such as the Orchestre de Paris, the Bamberger Symphoniker, the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, the Wiener Symphoniker, the Philharmonisches Staatsorchester Hamburg, the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Dresden Philharmonic, the WDR and MDR Symphony Orchestras, the Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse, and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg. At the Royal Opera House in London she guested in a production of “La Bohème”, a re-invitation brought her to the Opéra du Rhin in Strasbourg for a new production of “Samson et Dalila”.
In the 2021/22 season, she will conduct orchestras including the HR-Sinfonieorchester, the Sinfonieorchester Basel, the Swedish Radio Orchestra, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the Orchestre de l’Opéra de Bordeaux, the Orchestre National Avignon-Provence as well as the Württembergische Philharmonie. At the Norske Opera in Oslo she will conduct „Carmen“, at the Opéra Comique in Paris the world premiere of „Les Eclairs“ by Philippe Hersant.
Ariane Matiakh’s versatility and the joy she experiences when making musical discoveries is also reflected in her discography. For the Capriccio label, she recorded the works of Johanna Doderer as well as a CD with music by Francis Poulenc and Jean Françaix; in 2018, she received a Grammy nomination for her Capriccio recording of both piano concertos by Zara Levina with the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra. As part of a further collaboration with the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, she recorded works by Harald Genzmer, Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari and Richard Strauss. Berlin Classic released a recording with piano concertos by Clara Schumann and Ludwig van Beethoven, performed by Ragna Schirmer and the Staatskapelle Halle.
In November 2021, Ariane Matiakh was announced as the new Music Director of the Württembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen. She will take up her post at the beginning of the 2022/23 season. She is the first woman to hold the position of artistic direction of the orchestra.
In recognition of her achievements in French musical life and representing French culture abroad, Ariane Matiakh was awarded the “Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres” by the French ministry of culture in 2014.
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