|…Master performer of these pages and of so many other
ones of the music of our time as much as of all times.
Henri Dutilleux (Brussels February 15th, 2007)
|© Raphael Oleg|
Principal Guest Conductor of the Czech Radio Symphony Orchestra in Prague, Ronald Zollmann was born in Antwerp (Belgium), where he began his musical training at the age of four. He later became the pupil of Igor Markevitch and Nadia Boulanger in Paris.
Since 1973, his career has expanded rapidly. He appeared as a guest conductor with the best orchestras on all continents : BBC Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Residentie Orchestra, Orchester des Hessischen Rundfunks, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, San Diego Symphony, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Bamberger Symphoniker, Swedish Radio Orchestra, .... He has been the guest of major European festivals, such as Edinburgh, Flanders, Warsaw Autumn, Festival Estival in Paris, Gulbenkian in Lisbon and London Proms.
Ronald Zollmann not only dedicates himself to the great symphonic works of the traditional repertoire : he is very active in the field of opera and is also particularly noted for his commitment to contemporary music. Zollman has a rising reputation as an opera conductor : he conducted with great success a large number of performances at the Belgian National Opera (a.o. Don Giovanni, Cosi fan Tutte, La Bohème, Albert Herring and A Rake’s Progress) ; in 1984 he made an acclaimed debut at London’s English National Opera with La Traviata, which was soon followed with performances of The Turn of the Screw with The Scottish Opera. For the BBC he recorded Henze’s Der Prinz von Homburg, and the performances of Don Giovanni that he led at the Banff Summer Festival were considered as the highlight of this Canadian major event. In the USA, he is known for his performances of French romantic operas, such as Manon, Cendrillon or Roméo et Juliette.
As far as contemporary music is concerned, Ronald Zollman has worked regularly with the London Sinfonietta, and at Pierre Boulez’s request, he conducted the Ensemble InterContemporain in Paris, for the first of many times in 1982.
From 1989 till 1993,Ronald Zollman was Musical Director of the National Orchestra of Belgium, a position he then held since 1993 with the Philharmonic Orchestra of UNAM in Mexico City. In September 2002 he took the Music Directorship and Principal Conductorship of the Northern Israel Symphony, Haifa. In September 2009 onward, he became Director of Orchestral Studies at the Carnegie Mellon School of Music in Pittsburgh.
During the last yearsRonald Zollman added several CDs to his discography : following Mahler’s First Symphony with the Orchestre Mondial des Jeunesses Musicales, recorded live in Berlin, there were recordings with the National Orchestra of Catalunya, the Basler Sinfonie Orchester, the Zürcher Kammerorchester, the Northern Sinfonia, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, with his own orchestra in Mexico City and with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. Also active in the world of film music,Ronald Zollman recorded the soundtrack for “Le Maître de Musique” (“The Master of Music”), the award-winning motion picture featuring José Van Dam, a nominee for the Best Foreign Picture at the Academy Awards in Hollywood. The musical quality of this particular soundtrack was recognized with the award of a Golden Record.