Bassem Akiki (detail) View full image

Bassem Akiki

Conductor, Composer
© Ksawery Zamoyski

Bassem Akiki conducts an augmented Netherlands Chamber Orchestra with verve and vehemence; the whole is meticulously rehearsed and impressively polished

Shirley Apthorp, Financial Times, Animal Farm, Dutch National Opera

The music is like a patchwork quilt, so skilfully sewn together by the conductor Bassem Akiki

Stéphane Renard, L'Echo, Frankenstein, La Monnaie

Bassem Akiki is a Lebanese-Polish conductor and composer who regularly performs with theatres, festivals and orchestras worldwide, such as La Monnaie, Philharmonie de Paris, Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, Polish National Opera, Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra and Sinfonia Varsovia. In 2016, he was nominated for The International Opera Award in the Young Conductor category and recently won the Polish Theatrical Music Award as Best Conductor. Until 2018 he held the position of Artistic Director of Opera Śląska, Bytom and since 2015 he has been Artistic Director of the NFM New Year Festival in Wrocław. He was Music Director of Opera Wrocławska until 2022.

At the age of 24, Akiki made his professional conducting debut with Verdi’s La traviata at Opera Wrocławska where he was resident conductor until 2013. Since then he has built an extensive repertoire of titles like Mozart’s Così fan tutte, Don Giovanni, Die Zauberflöte, Offenbach’s Les contes d’Hoffmann, Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, Tosca, Turandot, Verdi’s Falstaff, Nabucco, Rigoletto, Hosokawa’s Matsukaze, Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov, Strauss’ Die Frau ohne Schatten, Szymanowski’s Hagith, Król Roger, Prokofiev's The Fiery Angel, Adès’ Powder Her Face and Dusapin's To Be Sung among many others. In 2013 he made his debut at Polish National Opera, Warsaw with Verdi’s Nabucco and double bill of Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta and Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle.

A specialist in contemporary repertoire, Bassem Akiki has conducted the world premieres of many new works such as Nicholas Lens' and J. M. Coetzee's Slow Man at Malta Festival, Poznań, Björk’s Medúlla at La Monnaie, Orfeo and Majnun at La Monnaie and Festival d'Aix-en-Provence and most recently Mark Grey's Frankenstein, also at La Monnaie. Future engagements include world premieres and debuts at La Monnaie, Opéra de Lyon, Dutch National Opera, Opéra national du Rhin, Royal Danish Opera, Théatre du Châtelet and the world premiere of his first opera, commissioned by La Monnaie.

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