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John Elwes (b1946)

Eclectic as a musician, Laurent Petitgirard combines a career as a composer of symphonic and film music with that of a conductor, appearing internationally with orchestras including the Orchestre de l’Opéra National de Paris, Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo, Orchestre National de France, Bamberg Symphony, Berlin Symphony, Zurich Tonhalle, La Fenice, the BBC Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic and the Suisse Romande. He served as Music Director of the Orchestre Symphonique Français from 1989 to 1996 and was appointed Music Director of the Orchestre Colonne in 2004. Laurent Petitgirard’s first opera, Joseph Merrick dit Elephant Man, had its première under his direction in Prague, followed by a staging at Nice under the director Daniel Mesguich. It is available on CD (Naxos 8.557608-09) and on DVD-V (Marco Polo 2.220001). In May 2006 it was given a new production by the Minneapolis Opera. After Le Fou d’Elsa, for contralto and orchestra. Petitgirard’s more recent works include Le Plus Ardent à Vivre (Septet with harp), Poème for large string orchestra, and Dialogue for viola and orchestra. Les Douze Gardiens du Temple, commissioned by Radio France, had its première in 2006 at the Festival Présences. His second opera, Guru, a state commission, is for the Opéra de Nice 2008-2009 season. Laurent Petitgirard was awarded the Grand Prix Lycéen des Compositeurs in 2000 and the SACD Prix Musique in 2001. A Commandeur des Arts et Lettres, he was elected a member of the Académie des




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