Nézet-Séguin's first professional position came in June 1998, when he became chorusmaster and assistant conductor of the Opéra de Montréal. In 2000, he was appointed artistic director of the Orchestre Métropolitain. Within three years he led the group in an acclaimed recording of Nino Rota's music, featuring Alain Trudel and Jennifer Swartz, for the ATMA label. The partnership with ATMA proved a fruitful one; Nézet-Séguin has gone on to make over 10 recordings with ATMA as both conductor and pianist. In 2003 not only did Nézet-Séguin give a widely praised interpretation of Lakmé for Opera Ontario, but this success in part resulted in an appointment as principal guest conductor for the Victoria Symphony 2003-06, and he was taken on by the Askonas-Holt arts management agency, known for promoting prominent conductors.
Under the aegis of Askonas-Holt, Nézet-Séguin's orchestral career began to grow in Canada, where he has since conducted every major orchestra; in Europe, where he made his debut with the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse (2004) and has since conducted in Germany, Belgium, Sweden, and Switzerland; in Australia; and in the US. In 2007, the musicians of the Rotterdam Philharmonic voted unanimously to hire Nézet-Séguin to replace outgoing principal conductor Valery Gergiev. He began in this position in September 2008. Earlier the same year, he was appointed principal guest conductor of the London Philharmonic. In 2010, Nézet-Séguin was named director-designate of the Philadelphia Orchestra; he will replace Charles Dutoit as principal conductor in 2012.
His reputation as an opera conductor has also grown rapidly, with engagements at the Opéra de Montréal, the Vancouver Opera, and the Canadian Opera Company, as well as venues in Europe, including the Liceu in Barcelona, working with such performers as Bryn Terfel, Renée Fleming, and Ewa Podleś. Nézet-Séguin's first appearance at the Salzburg Festival (2008), where he conducted Gounod's Roméo et Juliette, resulted in a Deutsche Grammophon video release in 2009. In 2010 he made his debut at New York's Metropolitan Opera, conducting Bizet's Carmen to widespread critical acclaim.
Known for his energy, charismatic presence and co-operative demeanour, Nézet-Séguin is popular with the orchestras he has conducted and has been invited back repeatedly. Though certain critics have tried to classify his style, he has remained defiantly eclectic, preferring not to specialize in any given repertoire. Arthur Kaptainis observed that "whatever orchestra he conducts, he has an artistic calling. It is remarkably protean and free" (Montreal Gazette, 10 Nov 2007).
Nézet-Séguin was awarded the 2000 Virginia Parker Prize from the Canada Council for the Arts, in addition to capturing several Prix Opus and a prize from the Conseil Québécois de la Musique for album of the year. In 2010 Nézet-Séguin received the National Arts Centre Award (under the aegis of the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards), and along with the Orchestre Métropolitain, received a Juno nomination for his recording of Bruckner's Symphony No. 8. In April 2011, the University of Quebec awarded him an honorary doctorate. On October 30, 2011 he was awarded the Prix Denise-Pelletier for the performing arts.
Conversations. Alain Trudel trombone, Yannick Nézet-Séguin piano. ATMA Classique ACD2 2289
Mahler 4. Karina Gauvin soprano, Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2004. ATMA Classique ACD2 2306
Arianna a Naxos. David DQ Lee countertenor, Yannick Nézet-Séguin piano. 2004. ATMA Classique ACD2 2326
Flemish Connection Volume 5: Arthur de Greef - Orchestral Works. Charlotte Riedijk soprano, Artur Pizarro piano, Flemish Radio Orchestra, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2004. Etcetera KTC 4013
Kurt Weill. Diane Dufresne soprano, Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor and piano. 2005. ATMA Classique ACD2 2324
Mozart - Lieder. Suzie LeBlanc soprano, Yannick Nézet-Séguin fortepiano. 2006. ATMA Classique ACD2 2327
Camille Saint-Saëns - Symphony no. 3. Philippe Bélanger organ, Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2006. ATMA Classique SACD2 2331
Weill - Rota. Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2006. ATMA Classique ALCD21036
Bruckner 7. Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2007. ATMA Classique SACD22512
La Mer - Debussy, Britten, Mercure. Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2007. ATMA Classique SACD22549
Pierre Lapointe en concert dans la forêt des mal-aimés. Pierre Lapointe, Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2007. Audiogram ADCD10219
Beethoven - Symphony No. 3 "Eroica," Strauss - Death and Transfiguration. Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra Live, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2007. RPhO 2008-3
Bruckner 9. Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2008. ATMA Classique SACD22514
Bruckner 8. Orchestre Métropolitain, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2009. ATMA Classique ACD2 2513
Tenor Arias. Marc Hervieux tenor, Orchestre Métropolitain, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2010. ATMA Classique ACD2 2618
Brahms - A German Requiem. London Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2010. LPO - 0045
Charles Gounod - Roméo et Juliette. Nino Machaidze soprano, Rolando Villazón tenor, Mikhail Petrenko bass, Russell Braun baritone, Falk Struckmann bass-baritone, Konzertvereinigung Wiener Staatsopernchor, Mozarteum Orchester Salzburg, Yannick Nézet-Séguin conductor. 2009. Deutsche Grammophon NTSC 073 4518
Author Evan Ware
So, Joseph. "Debut - Yannick Nézet-Séguin," Opera Canada, Summer 2003
Beaucage, Réjean. "Up among the stars!," La Scena Musicale, 6 Mar 2004
Turp, Richard. "The pit and the podium," Opera Canada, March/April 2006
Cera, Stephen. "The Wayne Gretzky of conducting," Maclean's, 19 Feb 2007
Kaptainis, Arthur. "Dutch treat," Montreal Gazette, 10 Nov 2007
Gurewitsch, Matthew. "A Canadian whirlwind hits town," New York Times, 2 Aug 2009
"Montreal's Nézet-Séguin earns kudos for Met debut," CBC Online, 5 Jan 2010
Links to Other Sites
The website for the Orchestre Métropolitain. Features a current concert calendar, a discography, and background information about the orchestra.
Conversations / Alain Trudel, Yannick Nézet-Séguin
Listen to brief clips from the recording "Conversations / Alain Trudel, Yannick Nézet-Séguin." From the cduniverse.com website.
The website for Yannick Nézet-Séguin, acclaimed artistic director and principal conductor of the Orchestre Métropolitain.
Askonas Holt: Yannick Nézet-Séguin
A profile and reviews of critically acclaimed conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin. From the website for Askonas Holt.
Yannick Nézet-Séguin, The Jetsetter
In this article, conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin discusses his multifaceted performance schedule. From scena.org.
Governor General's appointments to the Order of Canada
Scroll down the page and click on the links to brief biographical notes of recent appointees to the Order of Canada. Click on "Find a Recipient" on the left side of the page to find previous recipients. From the website for the Governor General of Canada.
GGPAA: Short Films
Watch a series of short films that pay tribute to numerous winners of the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards. From the National Film Board of Canada.
Music director Yannick Nezet-Seguin is set to put his signature on Philadelphia Orchestra
A news story about Yannick Nezet-Seguin assuming the post of music director for the Philadelphia Orchestra. Includes a brief interview with the famed conductor. From philly.com.
Yannick Nézet-Séguin To Increase Time With Philadelphia Orchestra
A 2011 news story about Yannick Nézet-Séguin expanding his responsibilities with the Philadelphia Orchestra. From broadwayworld.com.
A Tale of Three Cities
Scroll down for an article about the expanding career of esteemed conductor Yannick Nézet- Séguin. From scena.org.
Philadelphia Orchestra/Nézet-Séguin, Carnegie Hall, New York
A favourable review of an Philadelphia Orchestra concert conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin. From the Financial Times.