Jean-Bernard Pommier

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Jean-Bernard Pommier (born August 17, 1944 in Beziers), is a French pianist and conductor.


The French pianist, Jean-Bernard Pommier, began playing the piano at the age of four and gave his first public concert at the age of seven. He studied piano with Yves Nat and Pierre Sancan and conducting with Eugene Bigot at the Paris Conservatoire. Later, he also worked with Eugene Istomin in New York. In 1960, he received first prize in the Young Musicians International Competition in Berlin and the following year he was awarded the "Prix de la Guilde des Artistes Solistes Francais".

In 1962, aged 17, he was the finalist at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, where he was awarded First Honorable Mention by the jury presided over by Emil Gilels. Since that triumph, he has appeared with such eminent conductors as Herbert von Karajan, Bernard Haitink, Pierre Boulez, Riccardo Muti, Kurt Masur, Kurt Sanderling, Leonard Slatkin, Edo de Waart, Simon Rattle, Zubin Mehta and Daniel Barenboim under whose direction he performed the complete series of L.v. Beethoven concertos with the Orchestre de Paris. He is also regularly invited to the world' s most prestigious festivals and his recital and concerto appearances have included all major centers such as London Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, Leipzig, Dresden, Royal Concertgebouw, Orchestre philharmonique de Paris, Moscow, Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.

He is enjoying an increasingly active career as a conductor working with major orchestras in Europe and America. His most recent conducting engagements include the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI (Turin), Tonhalle Zürich, Warsaw Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Budapest Symphony Orchestra, MDR Sinfonieorchester Leipzig, Belgium National Orchestra and Salzburg Mozarteum. He also frequently takes up the dual role of pianist and conductor with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Northern Sinfonia of England, Sinfonia Varsovia, Israel Chamber Orchestra, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, English chamber Orchestra or Scottish Chamber Orchestra.

His chamber music partners have included Isaac Stern, Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman, Leonard Rose, Alexander Schneider, Jean-Pierre Rampal, Paul Tortelier, Maurice Bourgue and the Guarneri and Vermeer Quartets. He has given master-classes in Chicago, London, Lausanne and Melbourne.

He was Artistic Director of the Northern Sinfonia and Principal conductor of the Orchestra Filarmonica di Torino.


Preceded by
Heinrich Schiff
Artistic Director, Northern Sinfonia
Succeeded by
Thomas Zehetmair