Philippe de Chalendar, conductor

Philippe de Chalendar--seatedRecently in January 2017, Philippe de Chalendar debuted with the Lamoureux Orchestra at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées in Paris.  Also he conducted the China National Orchestra in Beijing in a festival concert of cello concertos on April 30, 2017.

Born in 1962, Philippe de Chalendar started his musical studies taking piano and cello classes. In 1985 he graduated from the Freiburg Music School and was taken as first cellist in the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival Orchestra where he played under Leonard Bernstein and Sergiu Celibidache. Upon the encouragement of Bernstein to pursue conducting studies, he joined the conducting class of the Paris National Music Conservatory and participated in numerous master-classes Sienna, Hilversum, Bartók Festival, Tanglewood.

In 1989 he won the special Jury Prize of the Besançon Conductors’ Competition and since then has been invited to conduct major European orchestras. The Symphonic Orchestra of Nancy invited him to stand-in to conduct Bartók’s Miraculous Mandarin and Schumann’s piano concerto featuring Jean-Bernard Pommier. Others followed such as the French National Orchestra, the Philharmonic Orchestra of the French Radio, the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Pays de la Loire and the Orchestras Pasdeloup and Lamoureux. It was also in 1989 that Philippe de Chalendar started to conduct major central European orchestras from Roumania, Poland and Hungary and has been re-invited by them regularly ever since.

Between 1993 and 2001 Philippe de Chalendar worked with Maestro James Conlon in the Paris National Opera, the Gürzenich Orchestra of Cologne and the Metropolitan Opera of New York. In 1996 he was appointed as permanent assistant conductor of the Paris National Opera where he worked on numerous productions such as La Boheme; Rigoletto; Don Giovanni; Don Carlo; Der Zwerg; L’Enfant et les Sortilèges; Falstaff; Parsifal; Turandot; Les Contes d’Hoffmann; Der Fliegende Hollander; Manon; Eugen Onegin; War and Peace; Don Quixote; Nabucco; Der Rosenkavalier and Wozzeck.

He made his first operatic debut with the Merry Widow in the Marseille Opera House and performed regularly as guest conductor with the Debrecen Opera House in Hungary: Magic Flute; I Pagliacci; Cavalleria Rusticana; Carmen; Bánk Bán and Idomeneo. In Germany he conducted Hansel und Gretel in Nürnberg, Rigoletto in Düsseldorf and Die Entführung aus dem Serail in Bonn.  In 2004 and 2005 he conducted Verdi’s Attila in the framework of the Budapest Summer Festival.

In 2001 Philippe de Chalendar moved to his second home country Hungary, where he conducted more than ten different orchestras including the Budapest Chamber Orchestra featuring the Wanderer Trio, and the Radio Symphony Orchestra of Hungary. He also conducted performances of Attila; Falstaff; l’Elisir d’Amore; Zigeunerliebe and La Fanciulla del West with various opera houses. In 2001 Philippe de Chalendar started to tour with Hungarian Orchestras internationally, he performed a concert tour with the Savaria Symphony Orchestra in France: Normandie, Paris, Tours, Aix-en-Provence, etc. presenting Hungarian music including Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra. In October 2002, he conducted a series of 9 concerts in the USA with the Pécs Symphony Orchestra upon which he was re-invited in 2003. With the Budapest Symphony orchestra he has recorded a CD of Berlioz’ Fantastic Symphony and Liszt’ Les Preludes) and a CD of Schumann’s Cello concerto.

Philippe de Chalendar held the positions of Music Director at the National Theater of Miskolc and of the Debrecen Opera House. In February 2008, he was invited to work with James Conlon at the Los Angeles Opera for the production of Otello and returned in 2009 for Braunfels’ The Birds. His interpretation of Adriana Lecouvreur for the Festival Mezzo in Szeged in November 2008 was unanimously acclaimed by the public and the critic.

Much appreciated for his precision and conducting technique among contemporary composers Philippe de Chalendar gave several concerts in the Pompidou Center of Paris as well as internationally e.g.  Freiburg, Milan and Madrid. He made a recording with the Ensemble Itinéraire featuring pieces of Spanish and Italian contemporary composers. He recently recorded for Hungaroton a CD of works of László Dubrovay: 1956 and 2nd Trumpet Concerto with the Hungarian Radio Orchestra.

Philippe de Chalendar is an active member of the Budapest International Community. He gives lectures in English and French on various musical topics, animates corporate social responsibility events and participates in a number of educational and charity programs, such as the Christmas Festive Concert series.

Mozart, Don Giovanni Overture (Miskolc, Hungary)


Beethoven, Egmont Overture (Debrecen, Hungary—1956 Revolution Commemorative Concert)


Liszt, Hungaria (Debrecen, Hungary)


Berlioz – Symphonie Fantastique 01  Dreams and Passions

Berlioz – Symphonie Fantastique 02  A Ball

Berlioz – Symphonie Fantastique 03 Scenes in Fields

Berlioz – Symphonie Fantastique 04 March to the Scaffold

Berlioz – Symphonie Fantastique 05 Dream of a Witches’ Sabbath

Liszt – Les Preludes