Ludovic Morlot Named Conductor Emeritus

Ludovic Morlot conducts the Seattle Symphoy. (Photo: Brandon Batoc)

The Seattle Symphony names Ludovic Morlot the Judith Fong Conductor Emeritus following eight transformational years as the Harriet Overton Stimson Music Director.

Seattle Symphony Board Chair René Ancinas and President & CEO Krishna Thiagarajan announced today that Ludovic Morlot, the Harriet Overton Stimson Music Director, has been named to a new position, the Judith Fong Conductor Emeritus, in recognition of his exceptional role in the transformation of the Seattle Symphony over the past eight years. The Symphony received a $1 million gift from longtime supporter Judith Fong to name the Conductor Emeritus position.

Morlot steps down as Music Director at the end of the current season, becoming Conductor Emeritus this fall. He will be succeeded by Music Director Designate Thomas Dausgaard, who has served as the Seattle Symphony’s Principal Guest Conductor since 2014.

As Conductor Emeritus, Morlot will continue his fruitful relationship with the Seattle Symphony, which has resulted in an expanded orchestra, nearly 60 commissions and premieres, 19 recordings on the Seattle Symphony Media label, five Grammy Awards, and Gramophone’s Orchestra of the Year Award. Morlot will return for regular guest conducting engagements and will have the opportunity to continue working with the orchestra on future recordings, tours and residencies when the Music Director is not available.

“We are all tremendously proud of the transformation the Seattle Symphony has undergone with Ludovic as our artistic leader, partner and friend, and we are thrilled to plan our future relationship with him in this new role as Conductor Emeritus,” shared Board Chair René Ancinas. “We are grateful to Judith Fong for her leadership and support of our artistic priorities. The Seattle Symphony is setting the pace for how an orchestra reflects and responds to its community, and we’re confident that our orchestra will continue to rise in relevance and global reputation with the arrival of our incoming Music Director Thomas Dausgaard.”

Morlot shared, “It has been an honor and a privilege to be Music Director of the Seattle Symphony for the last eight years. I am overjoyed to know that I will be a member of that beautiful family for years to come. What a thrill it is to be able to continue to dream ambitious projects with the Seattle Symphony beyond that chapter. I add my sincere thanks to Judith for her steadfast support of the orchestra and our vision, and for encouraging my personal growth as an artist.”

“It is my pleasure and privilege to support the Seattle Symphony in conferring this honor upon Maestro Morlot for all he has achieved during his tenure here. There is no one more deserving,” commented Judith Fong. “By pushing the creative envelope in his willingness to take risks, our audiences benefited greatly — while the orchestra gained worldwide respect and recognition. For this, the Seattle community owes him a debt of gratitude.”

President & CEO Krishna Thiagarajan shared, “It gives me great pleasure to celebrate the close and warm relationship that Ludovic has developed with our community, and the personal friendships built over the past eight years. Ludovic’s many accomplishments here have been a joint effort with our incredible musicians, administration and board. Today, the name ‘Seattle Symphony’ is synonymous with creativity and going beyond the boundaries of what it means to be a modern classical orchestra. This title is a culmination of an extraordinarily creative and productive partnership.”

An Invitation from Ludovic Morlot

"I have always felt that the Symphony is the heartbeat of Seattle. Keeping it beating strongly is incredibly important to me. I have made my gift to help ensure this orchestra remains healthy, musically and financially. Today I invite you to think of how the Symphony makes a difference in your life, and join me with a donation that is meaningful to you.

Thank you for being the heart of your Seattle Symphony, and for your dedication to the future of this orchestra, the community it brings together, and the people it inspires.”

– Ludovic Morlot

Please join Ludovic Morlot by making your gift for the music you love today. Every donation makes a difference.

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Posted on June 11, 2019