Judith Yan

Judith Yan

Judith Yan is a Canadian conductor, born in Hong Kong. Equally adept at conducting opera, ballet, and symphony, her career has taken her internationally, conducting for major companies in Germany, Italy, Hong Kong, New Zealand, and the United States. She is currently the Artistic Director of Guelph Symphony Orchestra and Music Director and Principal Conductor of Opera on the Avalon. She has held Staff Conductor positions at the San Francisco Opera, the Canadian Opera Company, and the National Ballet of Canada.

The 2013/14 season includes performances with GSO of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Holst’s The Planets, and Strauss’s Four Last Songs with soprano Cheryl Hickman, a Manitoba Chamber Orchestra debut, performances with Opera on the Avalon, and a new production of Don Quixote with Hong Kong Ballet.

Her professional career started in Canada at the Canadian Opera Company, where she served as the Conductor-in-Residence, a position created for her by then General Director, the late Richard Bradshaw. For the Canadian Opera Company, she conducted in the Altamira-sponsored outdoor concerts, a workshop production of Alexina Louie’s The Scarlet Princess, and Benjamin Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia. Critic Peter Dyson, in his review for UK’s Opera Magazine wrote: “The chamber orchestra, under Judith Yan’s energetic conducting, skillfully projected the score’s rhythmic variety…its striking harmonic shifts, always allied to and furthering the action on stage.” While at the COC, she also served as Rehearsal and Cover Conductor for productions of Xerses, Don Giovanni, Idomeneo, Il barbiere di Sivilglia, La Traviata, Il Trovatore, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, Die verkaufte Braut, and Pel!éas et Mélisande. During her tenure with the Canadian Opera Company, she collaborated with members of Stratford Festival, Ballet Jorgen and the Toronto Symphony on a program of Prokofiev, Bernstein and Gounod in the Romeo and Juliet MODD project.

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