Gulbenkian Orchestra and Choir
50% – Under 30 years old
15% – Over 65 years old
The young Estonian conductor Risto Joost excels by his specialized versatility and has gained widespread recognition for his work both in the opera pit and on concert stage. The trained singer and Conductor in Residence of the Estonian National Opera has already held major artistic positions, such as Chief Conductor of the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra and Artistic Director of the MDR Leipzig Radio Choir from 2015 to 2019. He succeeded at important competitions and conducted some of the world’s most distinguished orchestras. Since 2020/21 Risto Joost is Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of Theatre Vanemuine Tartu.
Risto Joost is in demand as a guest conductor with orchestras such as Helsinki Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, Norwegian Opera Orchestra, Tampere Philharmonic, Tapiola Sinfonietta,Trondheim Symphony, Netherlands Philharmonic, Noord Nederlands Orkest, Dortmund Philharmonic, Württembergisches Kammerorchester Heilbronn, Gulbenkian Orchestra & Choir, Prague Radio Symphony, Janacek Philharmonic, Brno Philharmonic, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra Teatro la Fenice, Latvian National Symphony, Liepaja Symphony, Estonian National Symphony among others.
In addition he collaborated with the RIAS Kammerchor, SWR Vokalensemble, Rundfunkchor Berlin, Swedish Radio Choir, Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir to name a few.
At the Estonian National Opera Risto Joost has led more than 20 premieres. His repertoire ranges from Baroque to the most challenging works of contemporary composers. At the Birgitta Festival Tallinn he led La Bohème in 2018.
Forthcoming highlights are his debuts with Bavarian State Opera Orchestra Munich, Symfonieorkest Vlaanderen, Philharmonie Zuidnederland, Kristiansand Symphony (Don Giovanni) and engagements to Slovenian Philharmonic & Choir, Gulbenkian Orchestra & Choir, WKO Heilbronn, Jyväskylä Sinfonia, Liepaja Symphony, Janacek Philharmonic etc.
At Theatre Vanemuine he conducts the premiere of Tonis Kaumann: The Mall as well as revivals of Tristan und Isolde, Don Giovanni, Madame Butterfly, Donizetti: Linda di Chamounix among others.
Risto Joost’s discography includes three albums by Tõnu Korvits: You are Light and Morning (Sei la luce e il mattino) with Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Hymns to the Nordic Lights with Estonian National Symphony as well as Moorland Elegies (all Ondine).
Furthermore it contains works by Haydn with Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, Peeter Vähi with Latvian National Symphony, Arvo Pärt with Netherlands Chamber Orchestra & Netherlands Chamber Choir.
For his artistic activities in Estonia and abroad, Risto Joost received the music award of the Cultural Foundation in Estonia in 2016 and was awarded the Young Cultural Figure Award of the Estonian Republic in 2011. He was Prizewinner of the Malko Conducting Competition 2015 and Jorma Panula Conducting Competition 2012.
Risto Joost has studied at the Estonian Academy of Music and received further training at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Vienna. In 2008, Risto Joost graduated from the Royal College of Music in Stockholm with a Masters Degree, majoring in orchestral conducting with Jorma Panula.
He founded the chamber choir Voces Musicales/Voces Tallinn in Estonia in 1999 and has been Artistic Director of the Birgitta Festival Tallinn in 2017 and 2018.
A renowned figure in the world of Baroque music, French soprano Sandrine Piau regularly performs with celebrated conductors such as William Christie, Philippe Herreweghe, Christophe Rousset, Gustav Lleonhardt, Ivor Bolton, Ton Koopman, René Jacobs, Marc Minkowski and Nikolaus Harnoncourt.
Ms. Piau embraces both lyric and Baroque repertoires. The roles she has recently performed include Cleopatra (Giulio Cesare) at the Opéra national de Paris, Mélisande in Nice and at la Monnaie, Ännchen (Der Freischütz), Pamina (Die Zauberflôte) and her debut as Donna Anna (Don Giovanni) at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées; the title role of L’Incoronazione di Poppea in Cologne; Sandrina in a new production of La Finta Giardiniera at La Monnaie, Ismène (Mitridate, Re di Ponto) at the Grand Théâtre de Genève and Sophie in Massenet’s Werther at both the Capitole de Toulouse and the Théâtre du Châtelet.
Sandrine Piau regularly appears in concert. In recent years she has performed at the Salzburg Festival, Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Covent Garden Festival, Musikverein, Paris’ Salle Pleyel, Festival de Saint Denis, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Teatro Communale in both Florence and Bologna and with the world’s most prestigious orchestras including Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris and Boston Symphony Orchestra.
Ms. Piau takes great pleasure in the art of recital. As a singer of both French and German repertoire, she has performed with many renowned accompanists including Jos van Immerseel, Roger Vignoles Corine Durous. She has a privileged relationship with pianist Susan Manoff with whom she recently made recital tours in the USA and in Japan.
Ms. Piau is an exclusive recording artist for Naïve. Recent recordings include 2011’s Après un Rêve and 2012’s Le Triomphe de l’Amour, which was named Opera News’ CD of the Month.
Her next engagements include singing Constance in Le Dialogue des Carmélites at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées, performing in Alcina at the Paris Opera and appearing in Ariodante at Le Festival d’Aix en Provence.
Sandrine Piau was given the title of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et Lettres in 2006 and was named “Lyrical Artist of the Year” in the Victoires de la Musique Classique award ceremony in 2009.
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St John Passion, BWV 245
In July 2022, the Estonian conductor Risto Joost conducted the Gulbenkian Choir and Orchestra in the Mass in B Minorby J. S. Bach at the end of the celebrations of the 3rd anniversary of the inscription of the Royal Building of Mafra on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. In March 2003 he had his premiere in the Gulbenkian Grand Auditorium, conducting Mozart’s Requiem. Recognised for his versatility, he has built a fruitful relationship with the baroque and classical repertoire, returning in 2024 to conduct one of J. S. Bach’s greatest choral works, the St John Passion.
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