Hartmut Haenchen was born in Dresden and received training from Pierre Boulez, Herbert von Karajan, Arvid Jansons and Yevgeny Mravinsky. He began his career in the former East Germany at the Robert-Franz-Singakademie and the Staatskapelle in Halle, and then at the Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra where he was musical director from 1973 to 1976. He later became the musical director of the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra and the Dutch National Opera in Amsterdam, where he would continue as principal guest conductor until 2007, after being its musical director for thirteen years. Whilst there, he conducted an extensive repertoire of works ranging from Gluck’s Alceste to Zimmermann’s Die Soldaten not to forget Pierre Audi’s production of The Ring. He has made highly acclaimed guest appearances at the Royal Opera House in London, the Los Angeles Opera, the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, the Vienna Staatsoper, Milan’s La Scala, La Monnaie in Brussels, the Teatro Real in Madrid, the New National Theatre in Tokyo, the Bayreuth, Warsaw and Kirishima Festivals, and the Paris Opera (Salomé, Capriccio, Parsifal, Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District, Wozzeck). He has also conducted many of the world’s prestigious symphonic ensembles, including the Berlin and Munich Philharmonic Orchestras, the Dresden Staatskapelle, the Leipzig Gewandhausorchester, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Orchestre de Paris, the Radio France Philharmonic Orchestra, The Orchestra dell’Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome, and the Madrid Symphony Orchestra. In October 2008, he was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany.