David Lloyd-Jones (conductor)

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David Matthias Lloyd-Jones (born 19 November 1934) is a British conductor who has specialised in British and Russian music. He is also an editor and translator, especially of Russian operas.


Lloyd-Jones was born in London. Before World War II, his family was evacuated and moved to West Wales to live on a farm. There he had no contact with classical music until the age of nine, when he studied Mozart in school. On his 10th birthday, his father took him to his first orchestral concert, at the Royal Albert Hall, with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. He quickly developed a love of British music, including Ralph Vaughan Williams, and also of Russian music.[1] He later attended Magdalen College, Oxford.

Early career and Sadlers Wells[edit]

Lloyd-Jones began his career in 1959 as a répétiteur at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. He made his professional conducting debut in 1961 with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. He conducted the New Opera Company from 1961 to 1964. He continued to build his reputation as a freelance conductor for orchestral and choral concerts. He also conducted for BBC broadcasts and TV studio opera productions.[2]

In 1972 he was appointed Assistant Music Director at Sadlers Wells Opera (now English National Opera), where he conducted a wide repertory which included the first British staging of War and Peace by Sergei Prokofiev.

Opera North[edit]

Lloyd-Jones founded and became the first Music Director of Opera North in 1978, forming its orchestra, the English Northern Philharmonia (now the Orchestra of Opera North), of which he became Artistic Director. Over the course of twelve seasons, he conducted over fifty productions in Leeds and other Northern England venues. Highlights of his career at Opera North included the first British performance of Krenek's Jonny spielt auf and the British stage première of Richard Strauss's Daphne. Other notable Opera North productions which he conducted included Delius's A Village Romeo and Juliet, Borodin's Prince Igor, Wagner's Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Berlioz's Les Troyens, Richard Jones's staging of The Love for Three Oranges, a double-bill coupling (as at their first performances) of Tchaikovsky's Iolanta and The Nutcracker – the latter choreographed by Matthew Bourne of Adventures in Motion Pictures – and the world première of Wilfred Josephs's Rebecca.

He also conducted orchestral concerts for Opera North, including at festivals in France and Germany.[2] He stepped down from the position of Music Director in 1990.

Other engagements and activities[edit]

Lloyd-Jones has conducted at the Royal Opera House, Welsh National Opera and Scottish Opera and at the Wexford, Cheltenham, Edinburgh and Leeds Festivals. He was Music Director of the Bradford Festival Choral Society. He has also appeared in major cities throughout Europe, Scandinavia, Russia, Israel, Japan, Australia and the Americas.

In the recording studio, Lloyd-Jones has specialised in British and Russian music, often for Hyperion and Naxos.[2] His recordings have included the first commercial recording of Constant Lambert's Summer's Last Will and Testament, released in 1992 and Tiresias, in 1999.

As an editor, he has tackled projects including the 1984, Ernst Eulenburg (London) miniature full score—in its critical edition—of Gilbert and Sullivan's The Gondoliers.[3] In June 2009, Lloyd-Jones conducted a professional recording of Arthur Sullivan's grand opera Ivanhoe for Chandos, which was released in 2010 and was nominated for a Grammy Award.[4]


In 1986 Lloyd-Jones was granted an honorary Doctor of Music of the University of Leeds, and in 2007 he was awarded honorary membership of the Royal Philharmonic Society, where he is a member of the Council.



  1. ^ Anderson, Colin. "Insights and Ideas from Conductor David Lloyd-Jones", Fanfare Magazine, January/February 2006
  2. ^ a b c David Lloyd-Jones profile at BachCantatas.com
  3. ^ Lamb, Andrew. "H.M.S. Pinafore, or, The Lass That Loved a Sailor", Music Library Association – Notes, Vol. 61, No. 2, December 2004, p. 533
  4. ^ Raymond J Walker, From MusicWeb International on arkivmusic.com


  • Adam, Nicky (Ed.), Who's Who in British Opera. Scolar Press, 1993. ISBN 0-85967-894-6
  • Warrack, John, and Ewan West (1992). The Oxford Dictionary of Opera. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-869164-5.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Music Director, Opera North
Succeeded by