Perry So

Conductor

Biography

In the 2017-18 Season, conductor Perry So returns to the Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias as the orchestra's Artistic Partner. He makes his European operatic debut at the Royal Danish Opera in Die Zauberflöte, opens the season at the Orquesta Sinfónica de Tenerife, and debuts with the Szczecin Philharmonic and the Nürnberger Symphoniker, which he will lead on tour to Milan. Other highlights include a return to the Vancouver Symphony, and a four-program festival with the Cape Town Philharmonic.

Recent debuts include the Cleveland and Minnesota Orchestras, Houston, Detroit, New Jersey, Israel and Shanghai Symphony Orchestras, the China Philharmonic, and the Residentie Orkest in the Hague. He has been a frequent guest both at Walt Disney Hall and the Hollywood Bowl following his stint as an inaugural Dudamel Conducting Fellow of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He led the Hong Kong Philharmonic with Lang Lang in an internationally televised celebration of the 15th Anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China at the close of his four years as Assistant, then Associate Conductor. He toured the Balkan Peninsula with the Zagreb Philharmonic in the first series of cultural exchanges established after the breakup of Yugoslavia.

So received the First and Special Prizes at the Fifth International Prokofiev Conducting Competition in St Petersburg. His recording of Barber and Korngold's Violin Concertos with violinist Alexander Gilman and the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra was awarded the Diapason d’Or in January 2012. He has recorded extensively with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the BBC Concert Orchestra.

He is known for his wide-ranging programming, including numerous world premieres on four continents and works from the Renaissance and the Baroque. He has conducted productions of Così fan tutte, Die Zauberflöte, Turn of the Screw, Giulio Cesare, Gianni Schicchi, and Die Fledermaus. His commitment to working with young musicians has taken him to the Australian Youth Orchestra, the Round Top Festival, the Manhattan School of Music, the Hong Kong Academy for the Performing Arts, and the Yale School of Music. He has assisted Edo de Waart, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Gustavo Dudamel, Lorin Maazel and John Adams. Born in Hong Kong, Perry So holds a degree in Comparative Literature from Yale University.

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Reviews

"Perry So is a dynamic young conductor with much to offer an orchestra. His beat is clear, he doesn’t over-conduct, he’s an excellent accompanist, he breathes with his phrases, and he’s able to bring the best out of his musicians. These traits were most evident in the Sibelius “Valse Triste,” which served as the concert’s encore. Here we heard the versatility of this excellent ensemble, taking them from a whisper of a pianissimo to large, never forced and beautiful fortes. It will be interesting to follow his career."

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