The Times, August 2010
Described by The Daily Telegraph as "a conductor of rare conviction and insight", Thomas Dausgaard is renowned for the rich intensity of his performances, his prolific discography and the remarkable results he has achieved as Chief Conductor of both the Swedish Chamber Orchestra and Danish National Symphony Orchestra.
The Swedish Chamber Orchestra has flourished under Dausgaard’s direction; since taking up his position in 1997 he has brought the ensemble to international attention. Together they record extensively, including all of Beethoven's orchestral music for Simax, a project which received outstanding critical acclaim. Breaking with tradition as a chamber orchestra, they have also recorded all of Schumann's symphonies, and in November 2010 released Bruckner Symphony No.2 as the latest in a series entitled ‘Opening Doors’ on the BIS label. The current season brings new recording projects to the orchestra, including a disc of works by Brahms. With Dausgaard’s drive to bring the orchestra to new audiences, they have toured throughout Japan, the USA and Europe – most recently at the Salzburg Festival and the BBC Proms, where the orchestra is a regular guest.
The 11/12 season marks the beginning of Dausgaard’s tenure as Conductor Laureate of the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, which has developed impressively under his leadership. Amongst their achievements are a disc of Nielsen works which was nominated for a 2007 Gramophone award, and a DVD of Danish composer Langgaard's opera ‘Antikrist’ on the Dacapo label, which won ‘DVD of the Year’ at the 2005 International Internet Awards. The latest release of Dausgaard’s authoritative recording cycle of works by Langgaard includes ‘Music of the Spheres’. In August 2010, he and the orchestra gave the UK première of this work at the BBC Proms; the performance caused a sensation amongst audiences and critics, and Dausgaard was praised for his “total command” of the players (BBC Music Magazine).
The 10/11 season saw Dausgaard continuing his regular collaboration with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, as well as appearing with SWR Stuttgart and MDR Leipzig. He closed the season by appearing at Sydney Opera House with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.
Dausgaard continues to maintain strong links with many of the major UK orchestras, working recently with the City of Birmingham Symphony and returning this season to the Royal Philharmonic, the Bournemouth Symphony and BBC National Orchestra of Wales. In June 2011 Dausgaard conducted the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and appeared with the orchestra again at the BBC Proms in August 2011, followed by another concert at London’s Barbican Centre in the current season. Elsewhere this season, Dausgaard visits Asia for engagements with the New Japan, Hong Kong and China Philharmonic orchestras.
Thomas Dausgaard conducts regularly in America and Canada, appearing with such ensembles as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia and Cleveland orchestras. Last season, he made his debuts with the Washington National, Dallas and Cincinnati Symphony orchestras and returned to the Houston Symphony and NAC Ottawa; all of these orchestras re-invited him. He returns this season to both the Toronto Symphony and the Seattle Symphony, where he has been praised by the Seattle Times for his “distinguished interpretations”.
The role music can play in the lives of children and young people is important to Dausgaard, who collaborates with several youth orchestras; most recently at the Baccarelli Institue in Brazil, the Toronto Youth Symphony and the Australian Youth Orchestra.
Thomas Dausgaard has been awarded the Cross of Chivalry in Denmark, and elected to the Royal Academy of Music in Sweden.