Welsh National Opera (WNO) has announced Tianyi Lu as its first female conductor-in-residence.
Following WNO’s Where Are All The Women symposium in 2018, the residency was launched to help readdress the gender balance across the industry, which identified challenges faced by women in the classical music industry.
The 18-month scheme aims to equip aspiring female conductors with the necessary training and experience to pursue conducting careers. Lu will work closely with WNO music director Tomáš Hanus and the WNO Orchestra across a range of repertoire, including opera and youth and community projects.
Born in Shanghai and raised in New Zealand, Lu is currently assistant conductor of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and principal conductor of St Woolos Sinfonia based in Newport. An LA Phil Dudamel Fellow 2017-18, she has performed with Gulbenkian Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra, Hallé Orchestra and Auckland Philharmonia.
Commented Lu: “I am thrilled to be back in Cardiff, my second home, to work with the many creative and courageous individuals that make up the vibrant organisation that is WNO. The company has inspired me for many years and I will relish the opportunity to dive into the diverse range of projects during my post over the next 18 months.”
Lu completed a Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and it was during her studies in Cardiff that she first worked with WNO, joining the Youth and Community team on WNO Youth Opera production, Kommilitonen!
Under the programme, Lu will have the opportunity to be mentored by British conductor Alice Farnham, artistic director of the Women Conductors programme at the Royal Philharmonic Society.