Martin André enjoys equally working in opera houses and concert halls throughout the world. He is a co-founder of Artisti con brio‚ a group of like-minded musicians living and working throughout Europe‚ who come together to create special projects. After learning violin and piano at the Yehudi Menuhin School‚ he studied music at Cambridge and made his professional début conducting Aida for Welsh National Opera. He recently celebrated 30 years of conducting operas and concerts in nearly 30 countries.
Martin André has a very wide operatic repertoire‚ but is particularly known for his Janácek‚ Verdi and Mozart. He has the rare distinction of being the only conductor to have performed with all the major British opera companies‚ including Un Ballo in maschera (Royal Opera House)‚ the U.K. premiere of Matthus’ Cornet Christoph Rilke and The Makropoulos Case (Glyndebourne Touring Opera)‚ Léhar‚ Mozart and Janácek (Scottish Opera)‚ Prokofiev‚ Mozart‚ and the world premiere of John Buller’s Bakxai (English National Opera). During the past 2 decades‚ he has enjoyed a close relationship with Opera North‚ conducting many new productions by Falla‚ Gounod‚ Janácek‚ Lehár‚ Martinu‚ Puccini‚ Rachmaninov‚ Ravel and Verdi. In 2000 he conducted a live broadcast of The Marriage of Figaro for BBC TV. With Garsington Opera he has conducted operas by Stravinsky‚ Martinu‚ Mozart and Humperdinck. From 1993-96‚ Martin was Music Director of English Touring Opera.
In 1986 he began conducting operas in the international arena‚ starting with the North American premiere of Janácek’s From the House of the Dead (Vancouver Opera). He made his début in the United States with Carmen (Seattle Opera). Since then‚ he has appeared regularly in Austria‚ Canada‚ Czech Republic‚ Denmark‚ Germany‚ Holland‚ Israel‚ Italy‚ New Zealand‚ Portugal‚ South Africa and USA.
In the symphonic world‚ he enjoys an equally full and varied repertoire‚ particularly enjoying the works of Haydn‚ Nielsen‚ Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky. He has enjoyed long relationships with Limburgs Symfonie Orkest (Holland)‚ Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música (Portugal) and Collegium Musicum Bergen (Norway). He has worked with many of the major British orchestras‚ and abroad in Australia‚ Israel‚ Mexico‚ as well as with other orchestras in Holland‚ Norway and Portugal.
Martin is passionate about helping the next generation of musicians‚ especially conductors. He has a close association with the Royal College of Music (London)‚ where he is a Fellow. He visits the RCM regularly as part of the 4 Year Orchestra Repertoire Training Programme that he created. In 2006 Martin created the National Youth Orchestra of Portugal‚ Momentum Perpetuum‚ which he managed for 5 years‚ including a triumphant tour of Italy- the first Portuguese orchestra of any kind to visit Italy.
From 2010 until 2013‚ he was Artistic Director of Teatro Nacional de Saõ Carlos‚ Lisbon. As such‚ he was the Chief Executive of 2 major Portuguese Cultural Institutions: the National Opera Company and the National Symphony Orchestra. As well as all his administrative duties‚ he conducted several new opera productions‚ including a Trilogy of La traviata‚ Il trovatore and Rigoletto to celebrate Verdi’s Anniversary in 2013. He also created a close rapport with the symphony orchestra‚ conducting a cycle of the complete Mozart symphonies in one weekend‚ and numerous large-scale symphonic and choral works by such composers as Bruckner‚ Janácek‚ Sibelius‚ Strauss and Tchaikovsky.
Since leaving Lisbon‚ Martin has completed 2 major operatic projects in Denmark- Lucia di Lammermoor and L’amico Fritz for Den Jyske Opera‚ using 5 different Danish orchestras in nationwide tours. He made his debut with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the BBC Singers in the World Premiere of A Christmas Carol by Neil Brand‚ returned to Porto and Funchal many times‚ continued his projects at the Royal College of Music and made two visits to the Bangkok Symphony Orchestra. Most recently Martin made a triumphant return to the Teatro Sao Carlos in Lisbon to conduct Der Zwerg and I pagliacci and continued his long relationship with Opera North with L’enfant et les sortilèges and Osud‚ receiving plaudits from both public and critics. He also conducted Cendrillon at the Royal Northern College in Manchester. On the concert platform‚ Martin celebrated his 50th concert with the Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto.
2018 is a season in 2 halves- during the first part Martin focuses on a wide range of symphonic repertoire‚ whilst the second part of the year is more operatic with The Merry Widow at Opera North and Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi with the Royal Northern College of Music.