Gustavo Dudamel Named Next Music and Artistic Director of the New York Philharmonic
Dudamel’s Term to Begin with the Orchestra’s 2026-27 Season; Will Become Music Director Designate During the 2025-26 Season
GUSTAVO DUDAMEL, whose transformative tenures at the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Opéra National de Paris have made him one of the biggest names in classical music, will be the next music director of the New York Philharmonic
Dudamel’s appointment as the Philharmonic’s Music and Artistic Director, slated to begin with the orchestra’s 2026-27 season for an initial five-year term, was announced today by the orchestra’s president and CEO Deborah Borda, its executive director Gary Ginstling and its board co-chairmen, Peter W. May and Oscar L. Tang. The conductor will take on the title of Music Director Designate at the NY Philharmonic during the 2025-26 season.
“Today, above all, I am grateful,” Dudamel said in a statement issued today by the NY Philharmonic. “I am grateful to the musicians and leadership of the New York Philharmonic as we embark upon this new and beautiful journey together; to my beloved family at the Los Angeles Philharmonic and YOLA for helping me to learn and grow through countless challenges and triumphs; and to my Maestro Abreu and the musicians of Venezuela who have been there with me since the beginning. As the great poet Federico García Lorca said: ‘Every step we take on earth brings us to a new world.’ I gaze with joy and excitement at the world that lies before me in New York City, and with pride and love at the world I have shared — and will continue to share — with my dear Angelenos over the next three seasons and beyond. All of us are united in our belief that culture creates a better world, and in our dream that music is a fundamental right. I look forward to the work ahead.”
During his time as Music and Artistic Director of the LA Phil, Dudamel has commissioned and conducted contemporary works by composers that include John Adams, Philip Glass, Bryce Dessner, Arvo Pärt, Sofia Gubaidulina, Kaija Saariaho, Gabriela Ortiz, Arturo Márquez and Esteban Benzecry. Dudamel’s role at the LA Phil also induced the orchestra to expand its community outreach efforts in 2007 by creating the Youth Orchestra Los Angeles, a program styled after Venezuela’s El Sistema, the music-education program from which Dudamel himself emerged. Prior to his time in Los Angeles, Dudamel served as music director of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra from 2007 through 2012. In 1999, Dudamel was appointed as the music director of Venezuela’s national youth orchestra, the Orquesta Sinfónica Simón Bolivar, and in 2004 he shot to international prominence by winning the Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition in Germany.
Dudamel’s appointment at the Philharmonic would seem to cap the recruitment process for one the industry’s most highly speculated positions, with eminent names having been propounded since Jaap Van Zweden—Dudamel’s predecessor and the NY Phil’s current music director—announced in September 2021 that he would end his tenure there at the close of the 2023-24 season. In joining the Philharmonic, Dudamel will become the twenty-seventh music director at an orchestra that has been previously led by the likes of Gustav Mahler, Arturo Toscanini and Leonard Bernstein.
“This is a dream come true for our musicians, our audience, and certainly for me,” said Borda, who arrived at the NY Philharmonic in 2017 after a seminal seventeen-year tenure at the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where she was largely responsible for hiring Dudamel as that orchestra’s music director. “The coming together of a great orchestra, a visionary Music and Artistic Director, and our transformed hall promises the richest of futures.”
Dudamel made his New York Philharmonic debut in November 2007 leading performances of works by Dvořák and Prokofiev, as well as the Orchestra’s first performances of Chávez’s Sinfonia India (Symphony No. 2) since Leonard Bernstein presented the work’s 1971 New York premiere. Dudamel has subsequently conducted the New York Philharmonic in twenty-six concerts, covering repertoire that has ranged from Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 (2009) to Gabriela Ortiz’s Clara and Andreia Pinto Correia’s Os Pássaros da Noite (2022), works by composers he commissioned to complement the Schumann symphonic cycle he led with in New York in March 2022. spacer
More information can be found at the New York Philharmonic.