Marin Alsop is one of the top conductors of the present day. She is currently the music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and principal conductor of theSao Paulo Symphony Orchestra. She is particularly well established as a conductor of the 19th century Austrian/German repertoire such as Beethoven and Brahms as well as the American 20th century repertoire works of Barber and Gershwin, among others. Marin Alsop was born in New York City in 1956 to professional musician parents. She started to learn violin as a child, studied music at Yale and obtained her master degree from the Juilliard School. In 1981 she founded the string orchestra, String Fever and in 1984 she founded her own 50-piece orchestra specialising in 20th century American music, including jazz, known as Concordia. She won the Koussevitsky Prize as outstanding student conductor at Tanglewood in 1989, where she studied with Bernstein and Ozawa.
Alsop became the director of the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in California in 1992 and became music director of the Colorado Symphony Orchestra in 1993. In that same year, she made her European debut at the Schleswig-Holstein Festival. Alsop was appointed principal guest conductor of the City of London Sinfonia and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
Header image courtesy of Beethoven FM Other image courtesy of Bruce Duffie