Internationally acclaimed conductor Rafael Payare will become the San Diego Symphony’s next music director
On July 1, 2019, Rafael Payare will become the 13th music director in the San Diego Symphony’s 108-year history.
Since being awarded first prize at the Malko Conducting Competition in 2012, Payare has been celebrated as one of the most exciting conductors of his generation. He has appeared with many orchestras internationally including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Vienna Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Pittsburgh Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, London Symphony Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony, Oslo Philharmonic, Gothenburg Symphony and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, amongst others.
Born in 1980 and a graduate of the celebrated Venezuelan education program, El Sistema, Payare began his formal conducting studies in 2004 with José Antonio Abreu. He has conducted all the major orchestras in Venezuela, including the Simón Bolívar Orchestra. Having also served as principal horn of the Simon Bolivar Orchestra, he took part in many prestigious tours and recordings with conductors, including Claudio Abbado, Lorin Maazel, Sir Simon Rattle, Gustavo Dudamel and Giuseppe Sinopoli.
As San Diego Symphony’s music director, Payare will shape the musical vision for the orchestra moving forward. His international experience and profile will attract the very best orchestral players and guest artists to San Diego. In addition, his own personal story about the important role that music has played in his life supports his vision to reach into the community to find new and enduring ways for the San Diego Symphony to play a greater role in the vitality and vibrancy of the San Diego community and region.