Chief Conductor and Music Director
Estonian-born conductor Arvo Volmer is widely acclaimed for his performances in both opera and concert. He is particularly known for his interpretation of Mahler, Sibelius, Nordic and Russian repertoire, and contemporary music.
Volmer made his professional debut with the Estonian National Opera at the age of 22 and has been associated with the company ever since. He became Associate Conductor of the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra in 1989, and was appointed its Music Director in 1993 (a position he held until 2001). He held the position of Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of Finland’s Oulu Symphony Orchestra between 1994 and 2005. In 2004 he took up both the positions of Artistic Director and Chief Conductor with the Estonian National Opera.
Arvo Volmer is also Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra – who recently extended his contract until 2013. During his directorship of the orchestra he has led tours to Los Angeles (Royce Hall) and New York (Carnegie Hall). In 2008 he began an extended Mahler Cycle with the orchestra over a five-year period.
This season's highlights include new productions of Carmen and Manon Lescaut at the Estonian National Opera as well as European Capital of Culture performances of Parsifal in Tallinn, a new production of Turandot with Opera Australia in Sydney in Spring 2012 alongside a new Aida with the same company in Summer 2012. Symphonic concerts will lead him to the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Turku Philharmonic and, for three performances with cellist Sol Gabetta, to the Konzerthaus Orchestra in Berlin.
Volmer has performed with many of the world's top orchestras and appeared at numerous theatres and opera houses. He has conducted such orchestras as the BBC Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Orquestra Sinfonica do Estado de São Paulo, Singapore Symphony Orchestra and L'Orchestre National de France. He has conducted the Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, Orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin and most of Scandinavia's major ensembles including the Finnish Radio Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic, Gothenburg Symphony and Royal Stockholm Philharmonic orchestras.
As an opera and ballet conductor, Volmer has performed at the Bolshoi Theatre, Finnish National Opera, Norwegian Opera, German National Theatre Mannheim, Chemnitz Theatre, Georgian National Opera and Malmö Music Theatre among others.
Throughout his career, Volmer has made a extensive number of recordings, including the complete symphonies of Jean Sibelius for ABC (recorded following a cycle with the Adelaide Symphony) and the symphonic works of Eduard Tubin. He has also recorded the complete works of Leevi Madetoja and discs of Swedish and Estonian contemporary music. His latest release features the wind concertos of Ross Edwards with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.