September 2021 saw the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra welcome their new Chief Conductor Domingo Hindoyan for his first season.

Taking over from Vasily Petrenko, world-renowed conductor Domingo Hindoyan leads on a season of incredible concerts including a wide range of repertoire from orchestral blockbusters to music from his native Latin America at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.

To find out all about his new role, we spoke to Hindoyan about his love of music, what it was like coming to Liverpool, a UNESCO City of Music and recommendations on what not to miss this season.

To see what’s coming up at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall visit their website here.

Can you explain the role of a conductor and how you lead the Orchestra?

The conductor leads the orchestra with gestures and movements that are meant to help the musicians to play together, with the same “tempo” or timing, and to balance the sound and volume. The most important aspects are to shape the musical form, phrasing and style.

By studying the score, context, and the history of the piece, as well as the meaning and musical content of the work, the conductor uses gestures to express what the music needs, and how the musicians can play it together. This also involves thinking about the psychology and sensitivity behind a piece to make the concert a special moment of connection between the audience, the orchestra, and the conductor.

What was it like when you first conducted the Orchestra? What do you think makes this orchestra different from others you’ve conducted around the world?

The very first time I conducted the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, it was like love at first sight. There was great chemistry and a totally natural way of communicating. I felt very comfortable, and enjoyed the way the Orchestra responded during the rehearsal process. I could feel from the first minute that the relationship was going to be special!

Every orchestra has its own personality, inspired by its own history, concert hall and musicians. Needless to say, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra has a great history, an exceptional concert hall and fantastic musicians.

Are there any particular composers that you are eager to introduce to Liverpool audiences?

I'm looking forward to bringing a range of my favourite works written by German and French composers to Liverpool’s audiences. In addition, I would like to introduce the best Latin-American composers, and to continue the Orchestra’s work featuring commissions and world premieres from brilliant living composers. I feel it would be unfair to name any particular composer, as there are so many fantastic ones out there!

What is your suggestion to someone who have never seen Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra or a classical music concert?

My advice would be to come and explore the live experience. Once you've tried it a few times, it will be difficult to stop! The power of 80 musicians at the top of their craft on stage is something to behold – there is nothing else like it. I’d recommend coming to a concert like Bolero on 23 January to get the experience of these cornerstone works of the orchestral repertoire.

How do you want get involved with Liverpool Philharmonic’s wider work in the community?

I was educated in Venezuela as part of the El Sistema programme, where music has an incredibly important social impact. I am proud to get to know the extensive work Liverpool Philharmonic is doing within the community.  I’ve already visited Liverpool Philharmonic’s In Harmony programme and I worked with the Youth Company last month, performing alongside our young musicians. I can't wait to get involved further!

What do you do when you’re not conducting?

Being a conductor is a demanding career involving lots of travel when I'm not conducting. When I have free time, I love to spend it with my wonderful wife Sonya and young children at home in Geneva as well as sightseeing and exploring the cities I work in.  

What were your first impressions of Liverpool and what are you most looking forward to doing in the city?

When I first came to Liverpool, it was instantly clear that it was a vibrant city where people love music and sports, which seemed like the perfect match for me! I can’t wait to experience the football scene. It would be great to see a Liverpool vs Everton game.

Concerts coming up at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall conducted by Domingo Hindoyan:

20 January – French Classics

23 January – Bolero

27 January – Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony

27 February – The Romance of Rachmaninov

3 March – Inextinguishable

6 March – The Joy of Mozart

3 April – Prokofiev’s Fifth Symphony

12 May – Song of Memories

15 May – Schumann Symphony

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