Kazushi Ono cherishes music’s power to bring people together. His manner in rehearsal, quiet and calm, exudes qualities of openness and receptivity. The conductor conveys complex messages in performance with effortless expressive gestures and a wisdom informed by his inexhaustible passion for making and exploring music with others.
In January 2016, Kazushi Ono was awarded with the prestigious Asahi Prize for his contribution to society. Established in 1929, this award distinguishes individuals or groups who have made outstanding accomplishments in their own field and who have greatly contributed to the development and progress of Japanese culture and society at large. From September 2016 Kazushi Ono becomes Artistic Advisor to the New National Theatre Tokyo.
During 2015 Kazushi Ono became Music Director of Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra and the Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya. Alongside engagements in Tokyo and Barcelona, Kazushi Ono maintains his position in the Opéra national de Lyon where he was appointed as Principal Conductor in September 2008. While in Lyon, he has attracted international critical acclaim with landmark performances of works such as Prokofiev’s The Gamblers, Berg’s Lulu and Wagner’s Parsifal, and has since reinforced the company’s reputation for creative high adventure with a series of new productions, including the compelling double bill of Dallapiccola’s Il prigioniero and Schoenberg’s Erwartung (2013); Beethoven’s Fidelio, in Lyon and at the Edinburgh International Festival (2013); Britten’s Peter Grimes and The Turn of the Screw (2014); Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande , Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust (2015), and Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk (2016).
Kazushi Ono is in demand at many of the world’s foremost opera companies, New York’s Metropolitan Opera, La Scala, the Bayerische Staatsoper, the Deutsche Staatsoper and the Opéra de Paris among them. His exceptional abilities as an orchestral conductor, nourished by a near-alchemical blend of profound musicianship, psychological insight and artistic discernment, have been refined by the combination of his permanent posts and guest engagements with, among others, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra.