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Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award Announces 2024 Winner

The $30,000 award is given annually to a promising American conductor 36 years of age or younger


The Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award, otherwise known as the Sir Georg Solti Fellow, has helped American conductors in the early stages of their careers for 24 years.

François López-Ferrer, Resident Conductor of the Académie of the Opéra de Paris, is this year's recipient.

The Solti Foundation U.S. Board Chair Penny Van Horn said, “The Solti Foundation U.S. is thrilled to announce that François López-Ferreris the 15th recipient of The Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award. In a very competitive field of applicants, François stood out amongst this year’s highly qualified applicants. A shining example of hard work, talent and commitment to the field of symphonic and operatic music, I am pleased, on behalf of the Foundation, to congratulate François.”

The award provides career guidance, industry connections, and $30,000 for grant recipients to further hone their skills. Awardees can use the monetary prize in different ways, whether it be for further studies, the study of languages, purchasing of scores, or traveling.

Additionally, with the guidance of the Foundation's Board of Directors, the award winners will get the opportunity to meet many experts and mentors within the industry.

Previous recipients include Keitaro Harada, Earl Lee, Gemma New, Aram Demirjian, Yaniv Dinur, Roderick Cox, Christopher Allen, Karina Canellakis, Vladimir Kulenovic, Cristian Macelaru, James Feddeck, Case Scaglione, Eric Nielsen, and Anthony Barrese.

The newest addition, Spanish-American conductor François López-Ferrer, formerly served as the Associate Conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and May Festival.

His former posts include Associate Conductor of the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Chile and Principal Conductor of the Ballet Nacional Chileno. An inaugural apprentice of the Verbier Festival’s 2018 Conductor Mentorship Program, López-Ferrer is a two-time recipient of a Career Assistance Award from the Solti Foundation U.S., and winner of the inaugural 2015 Neeme Järvi Prize at the Menuhin-Gstaad Festival. Full bio available below.

López-Ferrer was also featured in the League of American Orchestra’s prestigious 2022 Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview alongside the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra.

“I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the great honor of receiving the Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award," López-Ferrer said. "Over the course of the last three years, the unwavering support of the Solti Foundation U.S. has played a pivotal role in shaping my artistic journey, facilitated the refinement of my craft, and enabled me to evolve as an artist. This award stands as a testament to Maestro Solti’s enduring legacy of musical excellence, serving as a powerful reminder of the heights of achievement to which we can aspire as the next generation of musical leaders.

"This recognition profoundly inspires me to further cultivate my artistic vision and commitment to breathing life into the timeless masterpieces of the past while championing the voices of the present and future. I am profoundly moved and deeply grateful for the opportunity to continue my artistic journey with passion and dedication. I extend my heartfelt thanks to the Solti Foundation U.S. for their invaluable support and belief in my potential.”

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