After 15 years of successful music directorships in New Zealand and a substantial career in Australasia, Marc Taddei was appointed Music Director of his first American Orchestra on 30 March 2016. The Vallejo Symphony Orchestra, with a proud 85-year history, is California’s seventh oldest orchestra and is located in the city of Vallejo, near San Francisco. Marc’s first appearance with the orchestra was in January of this year, and his first engagement as music director will be in October.
Celebrated for his “magnificent contribution as Music Director” by The Press, lauded as “a real interpreter of boldly romantic inclinations” by the Dominion Post and singled out for his “intensity, commitment and attention to detail” by the Capital times, conductor Marc Taddei was appointed Music Director of Orchestra Wellington in 2007. His zest for creating engaging, erudite and innovative programmes, combined with his close audience connection has won for him an unsurpassed public following and continuing critical acclaim.
Marc frequently conducts every professional orchestra in New Zealand. He regularly works with the national ballet and opera companies and the International Festival of the Arts. Outside of New Zealand, Marc is routinely re-invited to guest conduct the major Australian orchestras and returns every year to conduct in the United States. He made his debut with the New York City Ballet in late 2012 and was immediately invited to conduct a full season the following year. Recent debuts include performances with the Hong Kong Philharmonic and the Xiamen Symphony Orchestra with cellist, Wendy Warner in China.
Continually noted for his interpretations, Middle C said of a recent performance, “…here was a performance that recalled for me the astonishment and excitement I felt when I first heard the work in my teens.” Similarly, City Voice (Wellington) wrote, “Here in our midst we have a conductor who is young, charismatic, and is able to communicate his emotions and visions of these great works to an orchestra, so that they can reach out and touch an audience like very few can actually do.”
His work in Vallejo and Wellington follows a highly successful tenure as music director of the Christchurch Symphony. The Christchurch Press praised Taddei at the conclusion of his directorship as, “the orchestra’s music director, whose energy, exuberance, drive and vision proved beyond all doubt that music is an essential feature of daily life in a 21st century city.” Recently, Wellington’s Dominion Post wrote, “Marc Taddei and his Wellington players have become a great success story in a short time. Taddei’s programming is imaginative, his demeanor infectious and his skill have seen a distinct increase in playing standards.” Classical Sonoma commented on Marc’s “commanding conducting” during his first performance with the Vallejo Symphony.
Marc Taddei has conducted the Queensland, Sydney, Melbourne, Tasmanian,Canberra and Adelaide Symphony Orchestras, Orchestra Victoria, the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, the Auckland Philharmonia, the Chamber Orchestra of Hong Kong and the Silesian State Opera in the Czech Republic. In the United States, he has conducted the Richmond Symphony, the Louisiana Philharmonic, the Oregon, Fort Worth and New Haven Symphony Orchestras, the Eugene and Springfield Symphony Orchestras, and the Southwest Florida Symphony. He has also conducted for the New York City Ballet, Opera New Zealand, the Royal New Zealand Ballet and has been a frequent presence at the New Zealand International Festival of the Arts. His performance with the Louisiana Philharmonic was nominated for best Contemporary Classical Performance of the year at the 12th annual Tribute to the Classical Arts in New Orleans.
Marc has worked with such diverse artists as Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Anne Sofie von Otter, Angela Brown, Julian Lloyd Webber, Horacio Gutiérrez, Simon O’Neill, Ilya Gringolts, Jennifer Koh, Joanna MacGregor, Jonathan Lemalu, Antonio Pompa-Baldi, Sir Howard Morrison, Michael Houstoun, Gregg Baker, Dame Malvina Major, Helen Callus, Csaba Erdélyi, Joshua Redman, Pedro Carneiro, Kevin Cole, James Morrison, Diana Krall, Bobby Shew, Art Garfunkel, Dave Dobbyn, Kenny Rogers and the contemporary music ensemble, Eighth Blackbird among many others.
Marc is an advocate and supporter of contemporary art composers. He has established three different and concurrent composer in residence positions with Orchestra Wellington, has recorded numerous works for commercial release and has both served on selection panels and conducted numerous readings for workshops with the Auckland Philharmonia and New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. The NZ Listener stated, “Marc Taddei is to Christchurch what Sir William Glock was to the BBC Proms. His innovations this year alone surpass those of the Christchurch Symphony’s entire history before he arrived as its music director four years ago.”
Marc’s impressive discography includes over thirty recordings on the Sony, BMG, Koch, Columbia, ABC Classics, Trust, ASV, Universal, Rattle, Atoll, Concordance, and Kiwi Pacific labels, and many of his discs are featured in streaming audio on the Naxos music library web site. Recent recording activity includes the soundtrack to the 2015 Legendary Pictures production of “Krampus”, also released by Waxwork Records.
Marc’s successes as a recording artist are informed by his work in the industry as a conductor, soloist, orchestral musician and as a producer. His release of British viola concertos with Helen Callus and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra received rave reviews in Gramophone, Classic FM, and Strad magazines and Music Web International and Classic FM listed the CD as recording of the month. The American Record guide said of his Berlioz Harold in Italy/Bartok Viola Concerto CD that “this is one of the best Harolds you’ll find anywhere, and the Bartok will appeal to anyone dissatisfied by previous editions of the score.”
His Rattle CD, “View From Olympus” was awarded Classical Album of the Year in 2007 at the Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards and spent an unprecedented nine months at #1 in the classical music charts. It was specially featured by Jim Svejda on KUSC-FM in the United States, and on his nationally syndicated programme, The Record Shelf. Marc’s SONY recording with the Christchurch Symphony went double platinum in 2004. More recently his Atoll CD, “Holocaust Requiem” won the 2012 Pizzicato Magazine (Luxembourg) Supersonic Award. Other special recognition for his recordings includes publications as diverse as Sequenza 21, American Record Guide, Strad Magazine and Music.Dish.com (Editor’s Pick).
Marc has conducted for Hollywood and international movie productions including Krampus, King Kong, Under the Mountain, No.2, and Dean Spanley. He also conducted the soundtrack to Britain’s Channel 4 film, “Wagner’s Ring”, which won the prestigious Prix de Basle Special Jury Award for the “most outstanding contribution to European culture in television”.
He has conducted for television producers such as C4 productions in the UK and New Zealand, FOX Television, TVNZ and TV3 in New Zealand. Marc’s appearances on television have included live performances with Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Young Musician of the Year, Last Night of the Proms, and a children’s television special entitled “Baby Proms” which introduces preschool children and their caregivers to the joys of the orchestra.
A special televised performance of Vaughn Williams Symphony Antarctica featuring Sir Edmund Hillary as narrator was broadcast live via satellite to Scott Base in the Antarctic in a world first in 2005.
In 2011 Marc conducted the NZSO in music for the innovative software package “Booktrack”, (http://www.booktrack.com/) which featured music of John Psathas accompanying Salman Rushdie’s short story, “In the South”.
An advocate of new media in performance, and extra-musical collaboration as a means of enriching the artistic experience, Marc has worked with many of New Zealand’s finest composers and visual artists in groundbreaking orchestral and visual collaborations that have energized audiences. One such collaboration, entitled Southern Journeys, was released by Natural History New Zealand as a DVD in 2002.
Marc is a graduate of the Julliard School in Manhattan, where he received both bachelors and masters degrees before moving to New Zealand. He divides his time between Auckland, Wellington and San Francisco.