2016 marks Maestro Charles Dutoit’s 80th birthday. For the past 50 years, Charles Dutoit established himself as one of today’s most in-demand conductors, having performed with all the major orchestras in concert halls across five continents.
Charles Dutoit is currently Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, an orchestra he has had a long association with having made his London debut in 1966 and who made his first orchestral recording with them in 1970. He recently celebrated his thirty-year artistic collaboration with the Philadelphia Orchestra, who in turn, bestowed upon him the title of Conductor Laureate. He collaborates every season with the orchestras of Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles and is also a regular guest on the stages in London, Berlin, Paris, Munich, Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Vienna, Sydney, Beijing, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Shanghai and many others. For twenty-five years, Charles Dutoit was Artistic Director of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, a dynamic musical team recognised the world over. From 1991 to 2001, he was Music Director of the Orchestre National de France and in 1996, was appointed Principal Conductor and soon thereafter, Music Director of the NHK Symphony Orchestra (Tokyo). He is today Music Director Emeritus of this Orchestra.
Maestro Dutoit has made more than 200 recordings for Decca, Deutsche Grammophone, EMI, Philips and Erato have garnered more than seventy international awards and distinctions. Charles Dutoit’s commitment to developing the younger generation of musicians has always held an important place in his career and he has successively been Music Director of the Sapporo Pacific Music Festival and Miyazaki International Music Festival in Japan, as well as the Canton International Summer Music Academy in Guangzhou and the Lindenbaum Festival in Seoul, South Korea. In 2009, he became Music Director of the Verbier Festival Orchestra and for many years has given freely of his time to mentor young conductors, many of whom are beginning flourishing careers with the world’s leading orchestras.
Maestro Dutoit has been the recipient of numerous honours in recognition of his work including Honorary Citizen of the City of Philadelphia, Grand Officier de l’Ordre national du Québec, Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the government of France and in 1998, he was invested as Honorary Officer of the Order of Canada. In 2007, he received the Gold Medal of the city of Lausanne, his birthplace and in 2014, he was given the 'Lifetime Achievement Award' from the International Classical Music Awards. As of 2016, he is Commander of the Ordre of Montreal. Maestro Dutoit also holds Honorary Doctorates from the Montreal Universities of McGill and Laval and from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.