James Gaffigan was born in New York and won first prize at the Sir Georg Solti International Competition in 2004. After working as an assistant to Franz Welser-Möst at the Cleveland Orchestra, he was named associate conductor of the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra under Michael Tilson Thomas. He is currently the musical director of the Luzerner Sinfonieorchester and chief guest conductor of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2021 he will become the musical director of the Verbier Festival Junior Orchestra. He has conducted numerous prestigious ensembles, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the London, Munich, Rotterdam, New York, Seoul and Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestras, the Orchestre de Paris, the Orchestre National de France, The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester of Berlin, the Dresden Staatskapelle, the Wiener Symphoniker, the Salzburg Mozarteum, the Tonhalle-Orchester of Zurich, the Tokyo Metropolitan, the Radio Bavaria Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and the Philadelphia, Saint Louis, Baltimore, Toronto, and San Francisco Symphony Orchestras. He has conducted La Bohème, Don Giovanni, La Traviata, and Le nozze di Figaro at the Vienna Staatsoper, Così fan tutte, La Cenerentola and Falstaff at the Glyndebourne Festival, Salomé at the Hamburg Staatsoper, La Bohème at the Zurich Opera and New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Così fan tutte and Don Giovanni at the Lyric Opera in Chicago, Carmen at the San Francisco Opera, La Fanciulla del West and Don Giovanni at the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, and Porgy and Bess at the Dutch National Opera in Amsterdam. During the 2020-2021 season, he conducted London’s Philharmonia Orchestra for the first time and led the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra on a tour of South America and Asia with solo pianist Rudolf Buchbinder.
James Gaffigan is making his Paris Opera debut.