Stefanos Tsialis

Stefanos Tsialis has been the chief conductor and artistic director of the Athens State Orchestra since 2014. In his almost five years in office, despite difficult circumstances, he has managed to increase audiences by more than 40 per cent. For some seasons now, the ASO has begun collaboration with some of the most illustrious musicians of our time, thus demonstrating its strongly risen quality. They include Vladimir Fedoseyev, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Martha Argerich, Leonidas Kavakos, Maxim Vengerov and Elisabeth Leonskaya.
 
In the current 2018/19 and 2019/2020 seasons, Stefanos Tsialis was reinvited to work with the Qatar Philharmonic, the South Westphalia Philharmonic, the Saarland State Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Teatro Massimo Bellini and the Thuringian Philharmonic in Gotha-Eisenach. Moreover, he will be conducting, among others, the North German Philharmonic in Rostock, the City of Muenster Philharmonic Orchestra, the Flensburg Philharmonic, the Royal Bangkok Philharmonic Orchestra, the Greek National Radio Orchestra and the Cracow Philharmonic. For several years, Stefanos Tsialis has also been involved in performing and recording film music. He speaks eight languages.

In September 2018 he was invited to conduct the opening concert of the 10th anniversary season of the Qatar Philharmonic with Srauss's "Domestica".

Stefanos Tsialis has worked with over 80 orchestras in many EU countries as well as in Canada, the US, Russia, South Africa, Turkey and Cuba. They include the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, the Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra, the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra, the MDR Radio Symphony Orchestra in Leipzig, the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra, the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, the Nuremberg Philharmonic, the Dortmund Philharmonic, the Saarland State Orchestra, the Stuttgart Philharmonic, the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra, the Tonkünstler Orchestra in Vienna, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Aarhus Symphony Orchestra, the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, Staatskapelle Weimar, the Philharmonic Orchestras of Teatro Comunale di Bologna and Teatro Massimo Bellini, the Haydn Orchestra in Bolzano, the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra in Bucharest and the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra.

In addition to his engagement in Athens, Stefanos Tsialis is regularly invited to perform with the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra, the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra, the Saarland State Orchestra and the Thuringian Philharmonic Orchestra.

He was born as the son of a Danish mother and a Greek father in Hermoupolis (Greece) in 1964. After studying piano at Thessalonica New Conservatory and musicology at Copenhagen University, he went on to graduate with distinction from Vienna Academy of Music as a conductor and répétiteur, and attended masterclasses with, amongst others, Leonard Bernstein, Vaclav Neumann and Rolf Reuter.

After his first engagement as assistant conductor and director of studies at Meiningen State Theatre, in 1996 Stefanos Tsialis received a scholarship from the Richard Wagner Foundation. From 1997 to 2004, he was chief conductor of the Central German Chamber Philharmonic, while from 2001 to 2004 he was also a permanent guest conductor of the Berlin Symphony Orchestra. He subsequently returned to Meiningen State Theatre as principal conductor and deputy general music director from 2005 until 2009. From 2009 to 2013, he was the chief conductor and artistic director of the Thuringia Philharmonic in Gotha.

In his operatic work, Stefanos Tsialis has collaborated with directors such as Peter Konwitschny, August Everding and Christine Mielitz. Developing a repertoire of 60 works, he has conducted a host of operas including Elektra, Salome, Wozzeck, Jenufa and Mona Lisa.

In 1995 he conducted the German premiere of Mikis Theodorakis’s opera Medea in Meiningen. This was to be the start of a long working association with the composer. Today, Stefanos Tsialis is regarded as one of the leading interpreters in the world of his countryman’s work.

Stefanos Tsialis has performed at many prestigious festivals, such as the Flanders Festival, the Handel Festival in Halle, the Tivoli Festival in Copenhagen, the Athens Festival, the ‘Braunschweig Classix’ Festival, the "Lisbon-Estoril-Festival" and the Hamburg Music Festival.

Stefanos Tsialis has recorded CDs for the Genuin and Centaur labels. He has also appeared in television and radio recordings for German public broadcasters ARD, Deutschland Radio Kultur, MDR and NDR as well as broadcasters in Greece, Italy, Romania and South Africa.

In 2020 two recordings with works by Nikos Skalkottas performed by the Athens State Orchestra conducted by Stefanos Tsialis will be released by NAXOS.