Roberto Abbado, awarded the prestigious “Premio Abbiati” by the Italian Music Critics Association, is Musical Director of the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía in Valencia and, from 2018, of Parma’s Festival Verdi. He studied orchestra conducting under Franco Ferrara at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice and at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome.
Musical Director of the Münchner Rundfunkorchester from 1991 to 1998, he has worked with many ensembles, including the Concertgebouworkest, the Wiener Symphoniker, the Orchestre National de France, the Orchestre de Paris, the Staatskapelle Dresden, the Gewandhausorchester, the NDR Sinfonieorchester, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra di Santa Cecilia, the Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai, the Filarmonica della Scala, the Orchestra of Teatro Comunale di Bologna, the MDR Leipzig, the Malaysian Philharmonic, the Symphonic Orchestras of Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, San Francisco, as well as the New World Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.
Roberto Abbado has conducted numerous world premieres and new opera productions, including Fedora and Ernani at the Metropolitan Opera House; I Vespri Siciliani at the Wiener Staatsoper; La Gioconda, Lucia di Lammermoor, La Donna del Lago, and the world premiere of Fabio Vacchi’s Teneke at La Scala; L’Amour des Trois Oranges, Aida, and La Traviata at the Bayerische Staatsoper; Le Comte Ory, Attila, I Lombardi alla Prima Crociata, Henze’s Phaedra – at its Italian premiere – and Anna Bolena at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino; Don Giovanni at the Deutsche Oper Berlin; Simon Boccanegra and La Clemenza di Tito at the Teatro Regio of Turin; La Donna del Lago at the Opéra Garnier; Ermione, Zelmira, and Mosè in Egitto at the Rossini Opera Festival; Der Vampyr at the Teatro Comunale in Bologna.
During recent seasons he has conducted A Midsummer Night’s Dream, I Vespri Siciliani and Tancredi in Valencia; Benvenuto Cellini, Andrea Chénier and I Masnadieri in Rome; Norma in Madrid; La Traviata at the Shanghai Opera House; Le Siège de Corinthe at the Rossini Opera Festival; Lucia di Lammermoor at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées; Don Pasquale in Bilbao; Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at the MET in New York.
Among his most popular recordings: I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Tancredi, Don Pasquale, Turandot, Verismo Arias, L’Amour and Arias for Rubini with Juan Diego Flórez (Decca); Bel Canto, Revive – both with Elīna Garanča for Deutsche Grammophon – the DVDs of Fedora, Ermione, Zelmira, Mosè in Egitto and of the traditional New Year’s Concert at La Fenice in Venice (2008).
From 2015 Abbado has led the orchestras of San Francisco, Dallas, Atlanta and Minnesota, the New World Symphony, the MDR-Sinfonieorchester of Leipzig, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Malaysian Philharmonic and the Orquesta Sinfónica de Madrid.