Emmanuel Plasson has established himself as a leading ambassador for French music with a stellar international career spanning both the symphonic as well as the operatic repertoire. His vividly passionate yet elegant musical interpretations have made him a highly sought-after guest conductor with opera companies and orchestras throughout Europe, North America, Asia and Australia.
Maestro Plasson was appointed Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of Hawaii Opera Theatre in 2019, where he had made his debut three years prior conducting Verdi’s Il Trovatore, and since conducted Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette and Tosca. His North American debut dates back to 1997 when he conducted Covent Garden’s Royal Ballet on a tour which included performances at the Metropolitan Opera in New York and led to his invitation as Assistant Conductor at the MET Opera over the following two seasons. Subsequent US appearances included the New York City Opera (La Périchole, L’Etoile and Les pêcheurs de perles), Boston Lyric Opera (Lucie de Lammermoor), Tulsa Opera (Les Pêcheurs de Perles, Faust), Minnesota Opera (Faust, Il barbiere di Siviglia), Cincinnati Opera (Les contes d’Hoffmann), and the New York Opera Society (Tosca) and the Opera Company of Middlebury (La Traviata, Eugen Onegin, L’italiana in Algeri, Madama Butterfly, Thaïs, La Rondine, Turandot and Macbeth) where he was music director for five years.
Emmanuel Plasson has conducted numerous renowned orchestras throughout his native France such as the Orchestre National du Capitol de Toulouse, the Orchestre National de Bordeaux or the Ensemble Orchestral de Paris. Regular guest engagements throughout Europe have included venues such as the Royal Ballet at London’s Covent Garden, the Hamburg State Opera, the Royal Opera Houses in Stockholm and Copenhagen or the Teatro Bellini in Catania, where he last scored huge personal success with performances of Lucia di Lammermoor.
Maestro Plasson is a frequent guest with orchestras that have included the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the Northern Sinfonia, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra (Norwegian premiere of Chabrier’s L’Étoile), l’Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Prague Symphony, the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, or the Symphony Orchestras of Lisbon, Aalborg and Aarhus. He has further appeared in numerous engagements at the National Ballet of Japan, Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra, and the New National Theatre in Tokyo.
Maestro Plasson enjoys a particularly strong artistic bond with Australia, where he has conducted six productions at Opera Australia (La Traviata, Faust, Manon, Orphée aux Enfers, Les pêcheurs de perles and Werther), Manon at Melbourne Opera, in addition to numerous concerts with the orchestras of Adelaide, Melbourne, Queensland and Western Australia.
He has further recorded several CDs for EMI and Dynamic, including works such as Donizetti’s Parisina d’Este as well as cello concertos by Lalo, Fauré and Caplet.
Having begun his musical career as a solo violinist working with orchestras around the world, Emmanuel Plasson went on to study conducting at the Pierre Monteux School in Hancock, Maine, and at Yale School of Music. In 1994, he won the prestigious Donatella Flick International Conducting Competition in London, following which he launched his UK conducting debut with the London Philharmonia Orchestra.