Chief Guest Conductor, Head of the Novaya Opera Artistic Board.Jan Latham-Koenig studied at the Royal College of Music in London and started his career as a pianist. But in 1982, he decided to devote himself wholly to conducting. He performed with all the leading European orchestras. From 1989 to 1992, he was music director of the Orchestra of Porto, which he founded at the request of the Portuguese government.
In 1988, he made a sensational debut as an opera conductor with Macbeth at the Vienna State Opera and became its permanent guest conductor from 1991, giving about one hundred performances. He now regularly conducts in the world’s leading opera houses, including Covent Garden, the Opèra National Paris-Bastille and the operas of Berlin, Hamburg, Rome, Lisbon and Santiago in Chile.
Jan Latham-Koenig was Music Director of both the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg and Opéra National du Rhin from 1997 to 2002. In 2005, he was appointed Music Director at the Teatro Massimo in Palermo. He is the first British conductor to hold such a post at one of the major Italian theatres, though he previously held the position of Principal Guest Conductor of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma in the 1990’s.
From 2007 to 2010 Jan Latham-Koenig was Music Director at the Teatro Municipal of Santiago in Chile. In different years he enjoyed directorship with the Wrocław Symphony Orchestra in Poland, the “Wratislavia Cantans” International Festival, artistic directorship of the Cantiere Internazionale d’Arte di Montepulciano and of the Young Janacek Philharmonic; he was also Principal Guest Conductor of the Filarmonica del Teatro Regio in Turin; Artistic Director of the Orquesta Filarmónica de la UNAM in Mexico City (2012–2015). Since 2013, he has been Artistic Director of the Flanders Symphony Orchestra in Bruges (Belgium).
Jan Latham-Koenig is greatly in demand as a guest conductor. He has appeared with orchestras world-wide and performs regularly in Italy, including with the orchestras of the Teatro Comunale in Florence, RAI Turin and the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome. As a guest conductor, some recent appearances include the Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa, New Japan Philharmonic and Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, and in China the Beijing Symphony Orchestra, Hangzhou and Qingdao Philharmonic. He has conducted the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Dresden Philharmonic and Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.
Jan Latham-Koenig started to work with the Novaya Opera Theatre in 2008 when he participated in the production of Wagner’s Lohengrin. In April 2011, he was appointed Chief Conductor of the Novaya Opera. Since January 2019, he has been chief guest conductor of the theatre. Since March 2013 he has been acting as the Head of the Artistic Board.
Jan Latham-Koenig is the Music Director of Wagner’s Lohengrin and Tristan und Isolde, Verdi's Il trovatore, Ravel's L'enfant et les sortilèges, Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro, Strauss’ Salome, Gounoud's Faust, Weinberg's The Passenger. Also, he conducts Verdi’s Nabucco and Rigoletto, Borodin’s Prince Igor, Puccini's La bohème.
In January 2010, Jan Latham-Koenig conducted Britten’s War Requiem during the 6th Epiphany Week International Festival. In January 2014, he conducted Walton's suites from the incidental music to Laurence Olivier's films Henry V and Hamlet and Mendelssohn's incidental music to Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream during the Epiphany Festival at Novaya Opera. In August 2014, the maestro conducted Britten's The Turn of the Screw (production of the Northern Ireland Opera) during the UK/Russia Year of Culture. In June 2016 he conducted the Russian premiere of Krzysztof Penderecki’s St. Luke Passion.
Jan Latham-Koenig has participated in the Novaya Opera's tours in Israel (the Israeli Opera, Tel-Aviv), the UK (English National Opera, London), Germany (International May Festival in Wiesbaden), Estonia (the concert halls in Tartu, Tallinn and Narva), China (Shanghai Grand Theatre) and Ireland (Bord Gais Energy Theatre in Dublin). The Novaya Opera company performed Verdi's La Traviata and Puccini's La boheme under the baton Jan Latham-Koenig at the 63 Festival Puccini in Torre del Lago (Italy, 2017).
Latham-Koenig has assembled an extensive and varied discography of over 40 CDs.
Awards and Honours:
Prize-winner of the Golden Mask national theatrical prize in the Opera/Best Conductor nomination for Wagner's Tristan und Isolde in 2014
Puccini's Il tabarro in concert – Conductor Ibert's Persée et Andromède in concert – Conductor Bach's St. Matthew Passion – Conductor Shymanowski's King Roger in concert – Conductor Massenet's Herodiade in concert – Conducor Rachmaninoff's Aleko in concert – Conductor Penderecki’s St. Luke Passion – Conductor Holst’s Savitri in concert – Conductor Boyarsky’s Pushkin (Poet and Tsar) – Conductor Handel's Messiah --Conductor Walton's Façade (chamber production) – Conductor Bach's Messe in H-moll – Conductor Saint-Saëns' Samson and Delilah (in concert) – Conductor
On 8 December 2016, artists of the Novaya Opera Theatre performed Gustav Holst’s chamber opera Savitri at the British Ambassador Residence in Moscow, one hundred years after the opera’s London premiere… Learn more…
The La Boheme production, premiered in December of 2015, will be shown at Irish Bord Gáis Energy Theatre. The Novaya Opera’s tour will take place from November 30 to December 4, 2016. The Irish soprano Celine Byrne will perform the part of Mimi in three performances.