French-Canadian conductor Jean-Claude Picard has been appointed as the Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s new Assistant Conductor.
Jean-Claude, who is currently based in Switzerland, succeeds Christian Kluxen who concluded his tenure as Assistant Conductor with a gala performance at the Caird Hall, Dundee last month.
The RSNO Assistant Conductorship is a two-year post, and benefits from the continued support of the John Mather Charitable Trust. The scheme is a rare opportunity for conductors keen to develop their talent and experience.
Some 162 applications from 28 countries over five continents were considered by the orchestra. Seven candidates were invited to audition with the full orchestra, where the applicants conducted a mixture of repertoire. Following the audition three candidates were invited to the final round of interviews.
As RSNO Assistant Conductor, Jean-Claude Picard will conduct a variety of the orchestra’s concerts, and will also play an active role in engaging audiences and communities throughout Scotland. In addition to many conducting opportunities, a key aspect of the role is to provide a supportive mentoring and learning environment, through ongoing professional evaluation and guidance from RSNO Music Director Peter Oundjian and player-mentors in the orchestra. Furthermore, Jean-Claude will have the opportunity to work with many guest conductors, and develop the multi-faceted leadership, organisational and public address skills required of modern conductors.
RSNO Music Director Peter Oundjian said: “We received applications from many talented individuals but Jean-Claude shone through as the clear winner. He is already an accomplished musician, having gained experience as a flautist with several ensembles as well as garnering significant exposure on the podium.
Jean-Claudesaid: “I am pleased to be joining the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and look forward to working with Peter Oundjian, Thomas Søndergård, guest conductors, and the orchestra’s fine musicians. I am excited to be moving to Scotland and getting to better know its people and culture.”