Hailed as one of today’s most exciting young conductors, Karel Mark Chichon was described by the New York Times as “A conductor of genius” and continues to thrill international audiences with his temperament, passion and musicianship. In recognition to his services to music, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II of England made Chichon an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) in June 2012.
He is Chief Conductor of the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern (beginning September 2011) with whom he recently renewed his contract until 2017. His previous positions include Chief Conductor & Artistic Director of the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra (2009-2012) and Chief Conductor of the Graz Symphony Orchestra (2006-2009).
In addition to his posts in Saarbrücken and Riga, Chichon regularly conducts at the Wiener Staatsoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Bayerisches Staatsoper Munich, Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Teatro Real Madrid, Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona and with orchestras such as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien, Wiener Symphoniker, Netherlands Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, English Chamber Orchestra, Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI, Russian National Orchestra in Vienna, Berlin, Paris, Rome, Turin, Bologna, Munich, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Madrid and Valencia.
Future debuts include Madama Butterfly at the Metropolitan Opera New York and La Bohème at Teatro alla Scala Milan.
In December 2010, he made a thrilling debut with the Royal ConcertgebouwOrchestra in Amsterdam for a set of four subscription concerts, stepping in for Antonio Pappano at short notice. These concerts were immediately acclaimed by the critics and audience.
He made his first recording for Deutsche Grammophon in March 2010 conducting the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI, which was released in September 2010. Over the next five years he will record the complete orchestral works of Dvořák with the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie for the record label Hänssler Classic.
Born in London in 1971, Chichon hails from Gibraltar. He studied at the Royal Academy of Music (London) and was assistant conductor to Giuseppe Sinopoli and Valery Gergiev.
Since 2003 he has been a regular guest conductor with the English Chamber Orchestra and in 2004 he was invited by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra to conduct concerts at their International Orchestra Institute in Salzburg and made highly successful return visits in 2005 and 2006.
He is a frequent guest conductor with leading orchestras throughout the world at venues such as the Berlin Philharmonie, Musikverein Vienna, Konzerthaus Vienna, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Royal Festival Hall London, Théâtre des Champs-Élysées Paris, Munich Philharmonie, Laeiszhalle Hamburg, Alter Oper Frankfurt, Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, Auditorio Nacional de Musica Madrid and Seoul Arts Center South Korea.