The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) has announced the appointment of Japanese conductor Kazuki Yamada its Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor with effect from 1 April 2023 for an initial four and a half-year period.
Yamada made his debut with the CBSO in 2012 and has been the Orchestra’s Principal Guest Conductor since October 2018. He succeeds Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, who has led the orchestra since 2016.
Born in Japan, Kazuki Yamada will become the first non-European to lead the CBSO. Yamada is also Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo and in Japan he holds further titles of Permanent Conductor of the Japan Philharmonic and Principal Guest Conductor of the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra.
Kazuki Yamada said, ‘I first worked with the CBSO in 2012 and immediately felt a very sincere connection with the players. This connection has really grown and developed over the last 9 years; our tour together to Japan in 2016 was one of the highlights of my career. After this the relationship was even deeper. I am so happy, thrilled and above all honoured to be continuing our journey together as the Orchestra’s Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor’.
CBSO Players’ Committee Chair Joanna Patton commented: ‘Kazuki is a kind, respectful musician filled with an energy which connects the orchestra with a sense of magic. His concerts are stories without words, filled with emotion, freedom and a sense of trust that is simultaneously exhilarating and rewarding.
‘We can’t wait to continue to share this most special connection with our audiences both here in Birmingham and further afield.’