Sylvain Cambreling

Sylvain Cambreling

Chief Conductor: Symphoniker Hamburg
Conductor Laureate: Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra

Representation: General Management

Photo: Marco Borggreve


French-born conductor Sylvain Cambreling is a thought-provoking, colourful and dramatic artist. He has a flair for grabbing the attention of audiences, yet his originality is rooted in thorough knowledge of musicology. A great believer in imaginative programming, Cambreling is famed for the originality of his concert-planning. Cambreling became the new Chief Conductor of the Symphoniker Hamburger at the start of the 2018/2019 season and has previously been Music Director at Staatsoper Stuttgart, La Monnaie and Frankfurt Opera. Cambreling balances his opera engagements and titled positions with guest appearances with the world’s leading ensembles.


Full Biography

French-born conductor Sylvain Cambreling is a musician with big ideas.  A thought-provoking, colourful and dramatic artist, he has a flair for grabbing the attention of audiences, yet his originality is rooted in thorough knowledge of musicology.  As the Chief Conductor of the SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg, and Principal Guest Conductor of Klangforum Wien, he has offered ample proof of his gifts for imaginative programme-planning and persuasive championship of contemporary music.

At the start of the 2018/2019 season he became the new Chief Conductor of the Symphoniker Hamburg. He was Principal Conductor of the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo from 2010 to 2019.

Sylvain Cambreling held the position of General Music Director of the Staatsoper Stuttgart from 2012 – 2018. He was Music Director at La Monnaie for ten years before becoming Music Director at Frankfurt Opera in 1993.  Productions notable for the introduction of new and often revolutionary ideas include Pelléas et Mélisande and Les Troyens for the Salzburg Festival; Wozzeck, Fidelio and a Ring cycle in Frankfurt. He has conducted extensively at Opéra National de Paris where his work has included Saint François d’Assise, Pelléas et Mélisande, Katya Kabanova, La Clemenza di Tito, The Love for Three Oranges, Don Giovanni, Le nozze di Figaro, Simon Boccanegra, Les Troyens, Louise, La Traviata, Ariane et Barbe-Bleue and Wozzeck.

He balances his opera engagements with his positions at the Symphoniker Hamburger, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Klangforum Wien and guest appearances in concert with the world’s leading ensembles.  He has performed with orchestras including the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics, the Tonhalle Orchestra, the radio orchestras of Frankfurt, Hamburg, Berln, Hannover, Köln, Copenhagen, Stockholm and London, as well as the Philharmonia, BBC Symphony, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Münchner Philharmoniker, Vienna Symphony, Orchestre de Paris and Oslo Philharmonic orchestras.  In North America he has conducted the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony and Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal.

A great believer in imaginative programming Cambreling is famed for the originality of his concert-planning.  A speciality is the juxtaposition of contrasting but related works or composers, for example Haydn and Messiaen, or Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust with Schumann’s Scenes from Goethe’s Faust.  Among the boldest of his projects was the performance on consecutive evenings of Messiaen’s three largest works – Turangalîla, Éclairs sur l’au-delà and La transfiguration de notre seigneur JésusChrist.

In 2009 Sylvain Cambreling received the Echo Klassik “Conductor of the Year Award” and the Deutsche Schallplatten Jahrespreise 2009 for best orchestral CD, and in 2010 the MIDEM Contemporary Music Award for his recording of Messiaen with the SWR Freiburg and Baden-Baden Symphony Orchestra. In 2012 he was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Artist Website:

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: Chloe Stowers-Veitch



Cambreling in Hamburg and Abu Dhabi

January 31st, 2020

Jeffrey Tate Prize in Hamburg and Beethoven in Abu Dhabi

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Cambreling with Kammerorchester Basel

January 18th, 2020

Stravinsky, Mendelssohn and Rihm Cello Concerto with Sol Gabetta

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Sylvain Cambreling in Japan

November 13th, 2019

Concerts in Kyoto, Kawasaki, Hiroshima & Nagoya

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Sylvain Returns to Frankfurt

May 31st, 2019

Szymanowski’s Roi Roger

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Sylvain Cambreling & YNSO

March 4th, 2019

Final concerts as Principal Conductor

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Discography & Repertoire

Mark Andre – Auf (Triptych for large Orchestra)

Three independent orchestral pieces with Sylvain Cambreling conducting the SWR Sionfonieorchester Baden-Baden and Freiburg

WERGO (2015)


Schönberg – MOSES UND ARON

Sylvain Cambreling conducts the SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg in a cast led by Franz Grundheber and Andreas Conrad


Artist Manager

Peter Railton (London)
020 7636 5447

Chloe Stowers-Veitch (London)
020 7636 5453