Yves Abel

Introduction

A frequent guest with the world’s great opera companies, Yves Abel has conducted performances at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; La Scala, Milan; the Metropolitan Opera, New York; Lyric Opera of Chicago; San Francisco Opera; Seattle Opera; Glyndebourne Festival; Bayerische Staatsoper; Opéra National de Paris; Netherlands Opera; Grand Théatre de Génève; Teatro San Carlo, Naples; Teatro Communale Bologna; New National Theatre, Tokyo; Welsh National Opera and Opera North. He has conducted new productions in Munich (I Capuleti e i Montecchi), Geneva (Les Vêpres Siciliennes), Barcelona (Madama Butterfly), Bilbao (Norma), Toulouse (Lalo’s Le Roi d’Ys and Les contes d'Hoffmann), Lisbon (Il turco in Italia), Naples (Gounod’s Faust), Dallas (Ermione), Seattle (Il Trovatore and Heggie’s The End of Affair) and Santa Fe (Così fan tutte), and at the festivals of Monte Carlo, Pesaro, Gstaad and Caramoor.

As Principal Guest Conductor of the Deutsche Oper, Berlin from 2005 to 2011, he conducted new productions of Don Pasquale, Simon Boccanegra, d’Albert’s Tiefland and Carmen, as well as performances of Le nozze di Figaro, La traviata, Dialogues des Carmélites, La bohème and Carmina Burana.

He is a frequent guest at the Vienna Staatsoper where his repertoire includes La fille du Régiment, L’Elisir d’amore, Carmen, Madama Butterfly, Simon Boccanegra, Un ballo in Maschera, and L'italiana in Algeri.

From January 2015 he will be the Chief Conductor Designate of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie; he is also a regular guest with the Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música, and the Haydn Orchestra. He has performed with the Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra at the Tivoli Festival, the RTE National Symphony Orchestra, Dublin, the Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Orchèstre du Capitole de Toulouse, the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, and the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini in Parma. He has also conducted the Netherlands Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Orchèstre National de Lyon, Orchestra of St. Luke's New York, the Royal Liverpool, and the orchestras of Toronto, Montreal, Genoa, Naples, Bolzano, and Palermo.

This season includes a new production of Giovanna d'Arco at Bilbao Opera, La Fille du Régiment at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and in Seattle; a new production of Pagliacci at San Diego Opera. He returns to the Metropolitan Opera, New York; Oviedo Opera, and Opera de Paris. On the concert platform he returns to Bolzano for concerts with the Haydn Orchestra and will give performances with the Bochum Symphoniker, the Orchestra of the Deutsche Oper Berlin and the Tivoli Symphony Orchestra with Joseph Calleja and will make his debut with the Seoul Symphony Orchestra.

A Franco-Canadian, he has a particular affinity with the French repertoire and has won significant critical acclaim for his achievements as founder and Music Director of L'Opéra Francais de New York, with whom he has regenerated rare French operas and also performed the world premiere of Dusapin’s To be Sung. Since 1994, the company has performed regularly to capacity audiences at the Lincoln Center. 

His recordings include Thaïs with Renée Fleming and Werther with Andrea Bocelli (Decca), Madama Butterfly with the Philharmonia Orchestra (Chandos), and two discs of French arias, one with Susan Graham and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (Erato) and the other with Patricia Petibon and the Orchestra of the Opera National de Lyon (Decca).  His most recent recording, ‘Romantique’, is a disc of romantic arias with Elīna Garanča on Deutsche Grammophon.

In 2009 he was awarded the title Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government.

For an up-to-date biography, please contact Henry Lindsay

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News & Features

Repertoire

Symphonies and large orchestral pieces, concerti, and choral pieces
 
BEETHOVEN
Symphony no. 1
Symphony no. 2
Symphony no. 4
Symphony no. 6
 
BERLIOZ
Beatrice et Benedict overture
La Mort de Cleopatre
Lelio
Les Nuits d'ete
Symphonie Fantastique
 
BIZET
l'Arlesienne Suites
Symphony in C
 
BRAHMS
Symphony no. 1 
Symphony no.2 
Violin concerto
 
BRITTEN
Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes
Les Illuminations
 
CHABRIER 
Espana
 
CHAUSSON
Poeme
Poeme de l'Amour et de la Mer
 
COPLAND
Appalachian Spring
 
DEBUSSY
L'enfant Prodigue
Prelude à l'Apres midi d'un Faune
 
DVORAK
Cello Concerto
 
ELGAR
Enigma Variations
Sea Pictures
 
FRANCK
Symphony in D
 
GERSHWIN 
I Got Rhythm Variations
 
HAYDN
Cello concerto no.1
Keyboard concerti (various)
Symphonies (various)
 
HEROLD
Zampa Overture
 
LISZT 
Faust Symphony
Hamlet
Les Preludes
Rhapsodie
 
MAHLER
Rückert Lieder
 
MENDELSSOHN
Symphony no. 2 (Lobgesang) 
Symphony no. 4
Violin concerto
 
MOZART
Davide Penitente
Piano concerti (various)
Symphony no. 40
Symphony no. 41 
Overtures (various)
 
MUSSORGSKY 
(arr. Ravel) Pictures at an Exhibition
 
ORFF
Carmina Burana
 
POULENC
Gloria
Les Biches Suite
Litanies à la vierge noire
 
PROKOFIEV
Peter and the Wolf
Symphony no. 1
Symphony no. 5
 
PUCCINI
Mass
 
RACHMANINOV
Piano Concerto no. 2
 
RAVEL
Daphnis and Chloe (both suites)
Piano concerto in G
Piano concerto for the Left Hand
Rhapsodie Espagnole
Tombeau de Couperin
 
ROSSINI
Guillaume Tell
Overtures (various)
Messa di Gloria
Stabat Mater
 
SAINT-SAENS
Habanera
Introduction and Allegro
 
SCHUBERT
Symphony no. 3
Symphony no. 4
Symphony no. 5
 
SHOSTAKOVICH
Cello Concerto no.1
Symphony no 5
 
SIBELIUS
Symphony no. 2
 
STRAUSS
Der Buerger als Edelmann
Don Quixote
Rosenkavalier Suite
 
STRAVINSKY
Dumbarton Oaks
Firebird Suite
l'Histoire du Soldat
Octet
Pulcinella Suite
 
TCHAIKOVSKY
Piano Concerto no.2
Symphony 5
Violin Concerto
Capriccio Italienne
 
VIEUXTEMPS
Cello concerto
 
WAGNER
Siegfried Idyll
Tannhäuser 
Venusberg (Paris)
 
WEBER
Freischütz Overture
Konzertstück
 
Operatic Repertoire
D'ALBERT
Tiefland

 
BARBER
Vanessa
 
BEETHOVEN 
Leonore
 
BELLINI
Norma
 
BERLIOZ
Béatrice et Bénédict
 
BIZET 
Carmen
Djamileh
Le Docteur Miracle
La Jolie Fille de Perth
 
CANO 
Luna
 
CHABRIER 
L'Étoile
 
CHERUBINI
Les Deux Journées
Médée 
 
DELIBES
Lakmé
 
DONIZETTI 
Don Pasquale   
L'elisir d'amore
La Favorite
La fille du Régiment
Lucia di Lammermoor
Poliuto
Roberto Deveraux
 
DUSAPIN 
To Be Sung
 
GLUCK 
Iphigénie en Aulide
Orphée et Eurydice
 
GOUNOD 
La Colombe
Faust
Roméo et Juliette
 
GRETRY 
Les Deux Avares
 
HEROLD
Zampa
 
HONEGGER 
Les Aventures du Roi Pausole
 
LALO 
Le Roi d’Ys
 
MASSENET  
Thaïs
Werther
 
MENOTTI 
Amahl and the Night Visitors
 
MILHAUD
Esther de Carpentras
Le Pauvre Matelot
 
MOZART
Così fan tutte
Die Zauberflöte
Le nozze di Figaro
 
OFFENBACH
Barbe-bleue
La Belle Hélène
Les contes d’Hoffmann
La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein
Orphée aux enfers
La Périchole
 
POULENC
La Dame de Monte-Carlo
Dialogues des Carmélites
Les Mamelles de Tirésias
La Voix humaine
 
PUCCINI 
Madama Butterfly
La bohème
 
ROSSINI 
Adina
Il barbiere di Siviglia
La cambiale di matrimonio
La cenerentola
Le Comte Ory
Ermione
L’italiana in Algeri
Matilde di Shabran
Il turco in Italia 
 
SAINT-SAENS 
La Princesse jaune
Samson et Dalila
 
STRAUSS 
Die Fledermaus
 
THOMAS 
Hamlet
 
VERDI   
Un ballo in maschera
Don Carlos
Louisa Miller
Rigoletto
Simon Boccanegra
La traviata
 
WAGNER 
Das Liebesverbot
 

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Schedule

Fundação Casa da Música, Porto

Herold- Zampa Overture                                                                                   
Bizet- Symphony in C                                                                                        
-
Verdi- Vepres Siciliennes Overture                                                                    
Bizet- L'Arlesienne 1&2 

Yves Abel, conductor
Porto Symphony Orchestra

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

Opera de Paris, France

HUMPERDINCK: Hänsel und Gretel

Jochen Schmeckenbecher, Peter
Irmgard Vilsmaier, Gertrud
Andrea Hill, Hänsel
Bernarda Bobro, Gretel
Doris Lamprecht, Die Knusperhexe
Elodie Hache, Sandmännchen
Olga Seliverstova, Taumännchen

Yves Abel, conductor
Opera de Paris

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Press

Tivoli Festival Gala Concert, August 2014

Tivoli Concert Hall

The orchestra under Yves Abel just played better and better. The French-Canadian combined the Tivoli Symphony orchestra with southern sounds (in south Europe).
 
Pieces like the overture to Sicilian Vespers or the emotional intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana sounded warm and beautiful in his hands. So let's please hang on to him. 

Rated: 6 Hearts
Politiken Today, August 2014
Opera concerts like this are always garnished with a string of overtures as little breaks for the singer. Here they could have played anything, but it was actually a great playing orchestra we witnessed lead my French-Canadian Yves Abel on the podium. A really quivering start of the concert with the overture to Sicilian Vesper and the overture to La Traviata sounded beautifully as a icy layer between the highpoints of the second half of the concert, Ideale and Macbeth.

Rated: 6 Stars
Jyllands-Posten, August 2014

20th March 2014

Bochum Symphony Orchestra

The concert [led by Yves Abel] recieved a rapturous applause from the audience. A rich blend of compositional and interpretive virtuosity. RuhrNachrichten Bochum, 24th March 2014
The grandiose and celebrated evening was conducted by a rousing and passionate Yves Abel...Enchanted audience members commented on what a wonderful the concert had been. Waz Bochum, 22nd March 2014

Donizetti

La Fille du régiment

The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden

But what really carries the evening are the singers and the orchestra, galvanised by Yves Abel’s propulsive conducting. Hannah Nepil, The Financial Times, 7th March 2014
Yves Abel’s stylish conducting offers great compensation Warwick Thompson, The Metro, 5th March 2014
Yves Abel conducts an immaculate musical account of what is a thumping good show. George Hall, The Stage, 4th March 2014
Yves Abel injects ample fizz and pop Nick Kimberly, The Standard, 5th March 2014

Concert, May 2013

La Filarmonica

Yves Abel moved the orchestra with admirable control and selected a carefully chosen program. The orchestra responded remarkably and there was a continual sense of space within the music. Gazzetta Di Parma, 4th May 2013

Concert, April 2013

Berlin Opera

Yves Abel creates smooth lines of music, naturally more comic than militant; A resonating “Bravi” after the Zarzuela songs. 

The conductor and musicians maintained contact with the soloists which revealed the subtle rarities of the repertoire. 

Sybill Mahlke, Der Tagesspiegel

Bellini: I Capuleti e i Montecchi

Bavarian State Opera

warf sich Dirigent Yves Abel temperamentvoll ins Geschehen, setzte auf Tempo und liess doch luft fürs zarte miteinander der Stimmen und ihrer konzertierenden Begleiter an Horn und Klarinette Gabriele Luster, Münchner Merkur, 20 February 2013
Yves Abel stand erneut am Pult und bereitete mit dem Staatsorchester seinen Sängern nicht nur ein samtweiches, fein ausziseliertes Bett, sondern behielt auch die Massenszenen sicher im Griff. Klaus Kalchschmid, Sueddeutsche.de, 20 February 2013
Dirigent Yves Abel temperamentvoll ins Geschehen. Er setzt auf tempo und lässt doch Luft fur das zarte Miteinander der Stimmen und ihrer konzertierenden Begleiter an Horn und Klarinette. Gabriele Lucer, TZ, 20 February 2013

Donizetti

La fille du Régiment

San Diego Opera

Conductor Yves Abel was a welcome, musically stylish and enlightened presence in the pit, expertly pacing the production and getting the best out of the San Diego Symphony. James Chute, U-T San Diego, 27 January 2013

Donizetti

L'Elisir d'amore

Wiener Staatsoper

Under the baton of Yves Abel the orchestra had a delicate awareness which supported the soloists greatly. Der Standard, November 2012

Massenet

Werther

Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado

Yves Abel's work in front of the Orquesta Sinfónicadel Principado de Asturias was exceptional. He marked his territory with a strong and resounding prelude. The whole evening was exquisite, highlighting the refined orchestration of Massenet and the superb quality of the music. Abel delivered a strong symphonic discourse, rich in expressive ideas, deep romanticism, orchestral filigree and interesting detail, particularly in the final section where he highlights the darker accents of the score… What a luxury to have maestro Abel to open the season. Cosme Marina, La Nueva España, 13th September 2012
The director Yves Abel, OSPA familiar to audiences of both the subscription concerts and the opera season, offered a very attractive version of the score. It was a memorable account, with a fluidity of tempo very appropriate to Massenet, an exquisite sense of color, and a great structural clarity of motifs and dynamics. Ramón Avello, El Comercio, 12 September 2012
Yves Abel a first class conductor, the audience applauded and calls of ‘Bravo’ were heard throughout the evening. La Nueva España, 12 September 2012

Donizetti

La fille du régiment

Metropolitan Opera

Yves Abel conducted the Met orchestra with buoyant energy that embraced the exquisite vocal pyrotechnics.

Veronika Dobnik, York Daily Record, 12 December 2011

Yves Abel conducted eloquently, guiding the orchestra through the contrasting feminine and regimental sounds with buoyancy and enthusiasm.

Caitlin McKechney, The Classical Review, 13 December 2011

Yves Abel led a shapely and fluent performance

George Loomis, Musical America, 14 December 2011

Verdi

Les Vespres siciliennes

Grand Théâtre de Genève

le chef Yves Abel mène avec une grande sensibilité

Tribune de Genève, 05 May 2011

En soignant les subtilités et les nuances d'une partition très riche, Yves Abel réussit à rétablir la cohésion d'une oeuvre inégale. Sa direction précise permet à la musique de se déployer magistralement et d'apporter le relief nécessaire aux ensembles qui parsèment l'œuvre.

Sylvain Angonin, Forum Opera, 07 May 2011

Donizetti

La fille du régiment

Royal Opera House

Yves Abel, conducting with silky finesse, restores a sense of French delicacy to Donizetti’s frothy score

Neil Fischer, The Times, 21 April 2012

Yves Abel's idiomatic conducting is lively and assured.

Graham Rogers, The Stage, 20 April 2012

...nimbly conducted by Yves Abel

Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 20 April 2012

The ROH chorus and orchestra, under conductor Yves Abel, entered the spirit of opéra comique with gusto. Donizetti triumphed.

Agnes Kory, Musical Criticism, 22 April 2012

Yves Abel elicited a precise account of the music [and] the tender moments really shone. A merry night at the Opera.

Kevin Rogers, Classicalsource.com, 20 April 2012

Yves Abel ensures that the orchestral fireworks blaze brightly.

David Galloway, Daily Mail, 20 April 2012

Yves Abel’s conducting is full of vim and spirit.

Warwick Thompson, Metro, 24 April 2012

Yves Abel conducts with panache and sensitivity.

Colin Anderson, Time Out, 24 April 2012

Bellini

I Capuleti e i Montecchi

Bayerische Staatsoper

Conductor Yves Abel led a spirited overture, kept tempos moving throughout and accompanied his youthful ensemble with great sensitivity.

Jeffrey a. Leipsic, Opera News, April 2011

Rossini

La cenerentola

Rossini Opera Festival

Leading the Bologna orchestra, Yves Able provided the most authoritative conducting thus far on a well-paced performance. If his tempos tested the singers, they were well up to the challenge.

Carlos Maria Solare, Opera, November 2010

Dal podio, Yves Abel dà un contributo decisivo alla brillantezza complessa dello spettacolo con una lettura di notevole profondità e sottigliezza, efficace nella ricerca dei colori (risponde bene l'orchestra del Comunale di Bologna), trascinante nello stacco dei tempi, nervosi ma non precipitosi, raffinata nella sottigliezza di un fraseggio mobile e franto, sempre «pensato». Compagnia di canto quasi del tutto omogenea ad alto livello.

Cesare Galla, Bresciaoggi, 13 August 2010

La direzione tersa e divertita di Yves Abel

Fabio Vittorini, Il Manifesto, 13 August 2010

El canadiense Yves Abel dirigio estupendamente a la orquesta del teatro Comunal de Bolonia...

Juan Angel Del Campo, El Pais, 13 August 2010

L'eccellente direttore canadese Yves Abel

Mario Messinis, Il Gazzettino 15 August 2010

In the pit, the Orchestra del Teatro Comunale di Bologna responded to Abel’s gestures with verve and sensitivity.

Leonard Turnevicius, The Hamilton Spectator, 15 August 2010

Verdi

La traviata

Royal Opera House

"Conducting, Yves Abel gives the score some French polish, ensuring smooth playing and sympathetic rapport with his singers." Neil Fisher, The Times, 13 May 2010
"Yves Abel draws playing of sensitivity and verve from the orchestra."  Andrew Clark, Financial Times, 14 May 2010

Verdi

La traviata

Metropolitan Opera

Yves Abel showed admirable refinement from the very first bars of the overture

An Unanmplified Voice, 19 April 2010

Recordings

'French Touch'

Works by Gounod, Messager, Delibes, Massenet and Offenbach
Patrica Petibon & the Orchestre de l'Opera National de Lyon


Decca

'Romantique'

Works by Berlioz, Donizetti, Gounod, Lalo, Saint-Saëns Tchaikovsky and Vaccai
Elina Garanca, Filarmonica del Teatro Comunale di Bologna
Deutsche Grammophon