Leonard Slatkin

Conductor Laureate 

Leonard SlatkinInternationally acclaimed conductor Leonard Slatkin is Music Director Laureate of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) and Directeur Musical Honoraire of the Orchestre National de Lyon (ONL). He maintains a rigorous schedule of guest conducting throughout the world and is active as a composer, author, and educator.

In the 2019-20 season, he will celebrate his 75th birthday year with several of the orchestras he has led over the course of his 50-year career, including the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, Nashville Symphony Orchestra, DSO, and ONL. Other highlights include return engagements with the Houston Symphony Orchestra, RTÉ National Symphony in Dublin, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and NHK Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo; debuts with the KBS Symphony Orchestra in Seoul, NDR Radiophilharmonie in Hannover, and Würth Philharmonic in Künzelsau, Germany; and three weeks in Spain conducting orchestras in Castile-León, Bilbao, and the Balearic Islands.

Slatkin has received six Grammy awards and 33 nominations. His recent Naxos recordings include works by Saint-Saëns, Ravel, and Berlioz (with the ONL) and music by Copland, Rachmaninov, Borzova, McTee, and John Williams (with the DSO). In addition, he has recorded the complete Brahms, Beethoven, and Tchaikovsky symphonies with the DSO (available online as digital downloads).

A recipient of the prestigious National Medal of Arts, Slatkin also holds the rank of Chevalier in the French Legion of Honor. He has received Austria’s Decoration of Honor in Silver, the League of American Orchestras’ Gold Baton Award, and the 2013 ASCAP Deems Taylor Special Recognition Award for his debut book, Conducting Business. His second book, Leading Tones: Reflections on Music, Musicians, and the Music Industry, was published by Amadeus Press in 2017.

Slatkin has conducted virtually all the leading orchestras in the world. As Music Director, he has held posts in New Orleans; St. Louis; Washington, DC; London (with the BBCSO); Detroit; and Lyon, France. He has also served as Principal Guest Conductor in Pittsburgh, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, and Cleveland.