As from the concert season 2019-20, Kristiina Poska will become the new chief conductor of the Flanders Symphony Orchestra. Internationally renowned Poska, born in Türi, Estonia, made her successful first appearance with the Flanders Symphony Orchestra this season, when she conducted a programme with work by Stulens, Beethoven, and Schubert. She will follow in the footsteps of, among others, Seikyo Kim and Jan Latham-Koenig.
Conductor Kristiina Poska (Türi) started her musical career in Tallinn, where she studied choir conducting. She later went to Berlin and studied orchestral conducting with professor Christian Ehwald at the Hanns Eisler Hochschule für Musik.
Kristiina Poska made her great breakthrough in 2010 with an impressive La Traviataby Verdi at the Komische Oper Berlin. From 2012 till 2016, she was the first conductor (Kapellmeister) of this renowned opera company. In addition to her successful opera career, Kristiina Poska is sought after as a concert conductor in many countries. Among others, she conducted the Tonhalle Orchester Zürich, Camerata Salzburg, the radio orchestras of inter alia Cologne, Leipzig, Saarbrücken, Frankfurt am Main and Vienna, the Münchner Philharmoniker, the Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, the National Orchestra of Estonia and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg.
In 2013, Poska won the coveted conductor prize of the Dirigentenforum of the Deutsche Musikrat. ‘Only few can boast a musical palette that is as extended as Kristiina Poska’s,’ the German press wrote. She also made the finals of the Donatella Flick Competition, as well as the Malko Competition in 2012, where she captured both the third prize and the audience prize.
In addition to becoming the new chief conductor of the Flanders Symphony Orchestra, Kristiina Poska will be the Music Director of the Basel Theatre in Switzerland in the season 2019-20.
Successful debut at Flanders Symphony Orchestra
This season marked Kristiina Poska’s debut with the Flanders Symphony Orchestra. In November 2018, she conducted the orchestra and soloists Lorenzo Gatto, Camille Thomas and Julien Libeer in a programme that featured work by Stulens, Beethoven, and Schubert. Both the orchestra and the audience were wildly enthusiastic about the cooperation.
First concerts as chief conductor
Kristiina Poska will make her debut as chief conductor of the Flanders Symphony Orchestra in Concertgebouw Brugge on Thursday 3 October 2019, when she will open the concert season 19-2020 with two classics by Brahms (the Double Concertoand his Second Symphony). Subsequently, this programme will be performed at, inter alia, De Singel in Antwerp (Sunday 6 October 2019), the Kursaal in Ostend (Sunday 13 October 2019), the Palace of Fine Arts in Brussels (Monday 14 October 2019), and De Bijloke Music Centre in Ghent (Friday 18 October 2019).
From the start I could immediately identify myself with the fresh, inspiring and committed way in which the Flanders Symphony Orchestra makes music and with the unique atmosphere of the historical Bijloke concert hall in Ghent, which could not better represent the mentality and way of making music I believe in – based on awareness of the past, looking to the future with flexibility and curiosity, and cherishing the mystery of a moment.– Kristiina Poska, chief conductor of the Flanders Symphony Orchestra from season 2019-20
The Flanders Symphony Orchestra has the support of the Flemish government and the City of Ghent, and has been the orchestra in residence in De Bijloke Music Centre in Ghent since 2017. Ghent has been the twin city of Tallin since 1982.