Pehlivanian George, conductor
Was born in Beirut, Lebanon. He captured international attention in 1991 when he became the first American to win the Grand Prize at the prestigious Besançon Conducting Competition aged 27. Since then, he has consolidated his reputation as one of the most compelling conductors of his generation. Mr. Pehlivanian was born in Beirut, Lebanon, starting piano and violin lessons at the age of three and six respectively. In 1975, he emigrated with his family to Los Angeles where he studied conducting with Pierre Boulez, Lorin Maazel and Ferdinand Leitner. At the Academia Chiggiana in Sienna, Italy where he spent two summers, he was awarded the Diploma di Merito. He has served as the Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz, Principal Guest Conductor of the Teatro Lirico di Cagliari. He conducts regularly many of the world’s leading orchestras including the London Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonia, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Filarmonica della Scala, Accademia di Santa Cecilia Orchestra in Rome, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Monte-Carlo Philharmonic, Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, as well as all leading North Maerican orchestras including those of Baltimore, Houston, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, St. Paul and others. His operatic experience includes La traviata (Verdi) at the Kirov, Tosca (Puccini) in Bordeaux, Otello (Verdi), Cavalleria rusticana (Mascagni) and Gianni Schicchi (Puccini) in Naples, Pique Dame (Tchaikovsky) and Andrea Chenier (Giordano) in Cagliari and many other productions in leading international opera houses. His discography also includes a series of recordings that are released with the Slovenian Philharmonic covering the most celebrated Slovenian composers. Other recordings include a double CD release with Virgin Classics/EMI and the Monte Carlo Philharmonic, the world premiere recording of music by Zhukov under Chandos with the Residentie Orchestra, works by Rodrigo with the Orquesta Nacional de España, as well as Liszt’s complete works for piano and orchestra with Louis Lortie and the Residentie Orchestra.