Martin Yates

Martin Yates

“…one of the most exciting and versatile British conductors of his generation…”

The Times

Representation: General Management


Martin Yates has worked as a guest conductor with some of the UK’s most respected orchestras and has worked extensively in Europe and further afield. Ballet has become a significant part of Yates’ musical career and he has developed an important relationship with the Royal Ballet, Covent Garden, where he returns each season. Elsewhere, Yates works regularly with the National Ballets of Finland, Norway and Japan. Yates has an extremely successful relationship with the Dutton Epoch label and has recorded much symphonic repertoire.


Full Biography

Martin Yates has built a career over two decades with a broad range of repertoire and genres. He has worked as a guest conductor with some of the UK’s most respected orchestras, including the London Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra and the Hallé. He has worked extensively in Scandinavia with orchestras such as the Gothenburg Symphony, Malmo Symphony, Bergen Philharmonic, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Ostgota Blasarsymfonikerna, and the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, with whom he conducted the world premiere of Mark Anthony Turnage’s A Prayer Out of Stillness. Elsewhere he has conducted the Zurich Tonhalle, Jerusalem Symphony, Danish Radio Symphony, Royal Flanders Philharmonic, Iceland Symphony, China Philharmonic, Guangzhou Symphony, Melbourne Symphony, Malaysian Philharmonic, Tasmanian Symphony, New Zealand Symphony, and the Orchestra of Gran Canaria. In early 2009, Yates made his Carnegie Hall debut, conducting the New York Pops Orchestra in a programme celebrating the music of Charles Strouse, and in September 2010 he conducted the flagship Proms in the Park event at Hyde Park for the third time.

Ballet has become a significant part of Yates’ musical career and he has developed an important relationship with the Royal Ballet, Covent Garden, where he made his debut in February 2004, conducting Stravinsky’s Agon. Yates returns to Covent Garden each season where productions have included Manon, Don Quixote, Romeo and Juliet, Mayerling, Seven Deadly Sins and Swan Lake. He has also undertaken tours of the US, Asia and Europe with the company, and recently worked with the Bolshoi Ballet Orchestra in Moscow. Elsewhere, Yates works extensively with the Finnish National Ballet and Norwegian National Ballet where past and forthcoming productions include Manon, Romeo and Juliet, Carmen, La Sylphide, Onegin, and Don Quixote. Further afield, Yates has formed relationships with the National Ballet of Japan and Hong Kong Ballet where he has worked on productions of Nutcracker and Manon. This season, Yates makes his debut with the Paris Opera Ballet for a production of Manon and also returns to the National Ballet of Japan for performances of Cinderella.

Yates has recorded symphonic repertoire with orchestras such as the Royal Scottish National, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Gothenburg Symphony, Bournemouth Symphony, and Royal Flanders Philharmonic. He has an extremely successful relationship with the Dutton Epoch label; current releases include a series of recordings of the music of Richard Arnell, the long-anticipated Moeran’s Sketches for Symphony No. 2 (completed: Martin Yates), Elgar Sea Pictures with Roderick Williams, and Vaughan Williams’ Symphony No. 5. The most recent releases focus on the works of Charles-Marie Widor with two CDs featuring his Symphony No. 2 and Piano Concertos 1 and 2.

Having studied as a pianist, composer and conductor, Yates made his conducting debut with the Israel National Opera, where over a period of two seasons he conducted productions of Verdi’s La Traviata and Puccini’s La Boheme, Tosca and Madame Butterfly. He has conducted in the opera houses of Gothenburg, Stockholm and Rome and made his Edinburgh Festival debut conducting Bernstein’s On The Town. He is lauded as a first-rate accompanist and has enjoyed collaborations with soloists of international repute such as Jose Carreras, Barbara Hendricks, Bryn Terfel, Montserrat Caballe, Roberto Alagna, Angela Gheorghiu and Yo-Yo Ma. He is honoured to have conducted several Nobel Peace Prize concerts in Oslo.


Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to ensure that you receive the most up to date version.
Email: Imogen Morris



New Ballet Carmen at Royal Opera House

October 26th, 2015

Martin Yates conducts a new production of Carmen as part of a ballet triple bill in Covent Garden

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Conducts the Royal Ballet, Covent Garden: Mayerling

“…Here was the Royal Ballet at its most powerful in identity – the national ensemble Dame Ninette intended and guided from its first steps. The orchestra under Martin Yates played with a power that matched the danced performance. A superlative evening…”

Financial Times, April 2013

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Discography & Repertoire


Martin Yates’ exploration of Damase’s music for Dutton Epoch is a triumph, revealing an appealing composer in the vein of Poulenc and Honegger. Ashley Wass plays the alluring, jazz-inflected Second Piano Concerto and the Poulenc-indebted Concertino with sparkle and wit, and Anna Noakes the melodic and graceful Flute Concerto, perhaps bringing Jean Françaix to mind. Completing the disc is the Symphonie of 1952, with its lyrical first movement, modal slow movement and gripping finale featuring a radiant transformation of the theme from the first movement and a noble conclusion.


ARNOLD BAX – Symphony in F

The piano score of Arnold Bax’s Symphony in F of 1907 was completed by its composer but never orchestrated, and has long been one of the great “might-have-beens” of the British symphonic repertoire, along with Elgar’s Third Symphony and E. J. Moeran’s Second. Unlike Elgar and Moeran, Bax actually completed his symphony, and now Martin Yates has set it into full score, managing to catch the elusive, idiomatic sound of Bax’s orchestra in a convincing way we never expected to hear.


ALAN BUSH – Africa Piano Concerto

Alan Bush’s stern face usually hid a tuneful heart, and in Dutton Epoch’s second disc of orchestral music by this composer, the RSNO presents the popular, programmatic Nottingham Symphony evoking Sherwood Forest, Clifton Grove, Castle Rock and the Goose Fair. Also featured is Peter Donohoe’s authoritative pianism in Bush’s “Symphonic Movement” – in fact, a piano concerto in all but name, which he called Africa, politically inspired and based on appropriately African tunes and rhythms. Martin Yates conducts the RSNO.


Artist Manager

Peter Railton (London)
020 7636 5447

Assistant Artist Manager

Imogen Morris (London)
020 7636 5448