Ryan Wigglesworth will take up the role of principal guest conductor of Manchester’s Hallé orchestra for three years from September 2015, succeeding Markus Stenz.
Wigglesworth, also a composer and pianist, will advise the Hallé on contemporary music and perform with orchestra members in programmes of chamber music. He will also make recordings with the orchestra on the Hallé own-label and NMC.
The Hallé was the first orchestra the ‘thrilled’ conductor ever heard live, he said: ‘My first experience of live orchestral music as a child was listening to the Hallé at Sheffield City Hall. In more recent years I’ve followed their astonishing work with Sir Mark [Elder, Hallé music director] with great pleasure and admiration, and I look forward enormously to developing my own relationship with the orchestra over the coming years.’
Wigglesworth’s first work with the orchestra was on an NMC recording of Harrison Birtwistle’s orchestral works in 2010, and he made his concert debut with the orchestra last December. He will conduct the orchestra for an NMC recording of his own works this July. The deal will see him conduct at least five Hallé concerts in Manchester each season, supplemented by several concerts elsewhere.
The Hallé’s chief executive, John Summers, said: ‘We are all very much looking forward to welcoming Ryan Wigglesworth next year, and are delighted that such a considerable artist will become a part of the Hallé family. Ryan is a worthy successor to Markus Stenz, Principal Guest Conductor for the past six years, with whom the Hallé has enjoyed a warm and successful relationship.”