The Kennedy Center

Emil de Cou


American conductor Emil de Cou has just completed his second summer as NSO@Wolf Trap Festival Conductor.  He joined the National Symphony conducting staff as Assistant Conductor in 2002 and was promoted to Associate Conductor in the fall of 2003.  He has been an active participant in a wide range of National Symphony performances and events since his debut at Wolf Trap in 2000.  These include appearances with the NSO during American Residencies in six states, numerous education performances, and the Labor Day Weekend Capitol Concerts since 2002.

His NSO subscription debut took place in March 2003, substituting on short notice for Vladimir Fedoseyev. He has appeared as guest conductor with many leading orchestras, including those of Philadelphia, Houston, St. Louis, Detroit, Montreal, Boston Pops, Minnesota, and San Francisco, where he also served as Principal Pops Conductor for the 1995 and 1996 seasons.  He was staff conductor of San Francisco Ballet from 1993 until 2001 and was acting music director for the last three of those seasons.  Prior to his work in San Francisco, Mr. de Cou was conductor of the American Ballet Theatre for eight seasons conducting performances in New York as well as national and international tours.

In June 2003, Great Performances (PBS) aired the ballet Othello with the San Francisco Ballet led by Mr. de Cou.  The Ballet Suite, by Elliot Goldenthal, was recorded by Mr. de Cou for Varese Sarabande; among his other recordings is Debussy Rediscovered for Arabesque, which includes previously unrecorded works by Debussy.

He appeared as guest conductor in the Beverly Sills Gala Tribute, leading the Orchestra of St. Luke's, and a stellar roster of soloists – including Lang Lang and Gil Shaham – in a benefit for Lincoln Center.

Forthcoming engagements for Mr. de Cou include guest conducting appearances with the Symphony Silicon Valley, Portland (ME) Symphony, Reading Symphony and Southwest Florida Symphony.

Mr. de Cou has demonstrated a commitment to music education with NSO Young People's Concerts and Family Concerts in Washington and on tour with the Orchestra during its American Residencies in six states. Other NSO engagements include the University of Maryland Residency, Youth Orchestra Day, the annual Messiah concerts and a host of free concerts such as the Labor Day Weekend Capitol Concert.

(September 2006)
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