Philippe Auguin

Philippe Auguin is the music director of the Washington National Opera and the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra.

Among the most sought-after conductors of his generation, Maestro Philippe Auguin has led an extraordinary career conducting masterworks in the most prestigious opera houses and with orchestras around the world.

He is the Music Director of the Washington National Opera (WNO) and the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Maestro Auguin is a consummate conductor with an extensive history performing with extraordinary opera houses and orchestras. In past seasons, he has led performances at the Metropolitan Opera of Doktor Faust, Die Frau Ohne Schatten, La Bohème, Lohengrin, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, and Arabella. At the Vienna Staatsoper he conducted Die Tote Stadt,  La Forza del Destino, Madama Butterly, La Bohème, Aida, Simon Boccanegra, and Tosca, etc.  At the Deutsche Oper Berlin for TannhäuserDer Fliegende Holländer, Aida, Carmen, Fidelio, etc; Opera Australia for La Traviata, Tannhäuser, and Capriccio; Teatro Colón Buenos Aires for Manon; Savonlinna Opera Festival for Mefistofele, Lohengrin, Der Fliegende Hollander, and Tosca.

In concert, Maestro Auguin celebrated highly acclaimed performances conducting Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall; Schumann’s Symphony No. 1 with the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées; Brahms’ Symphony No. 2 with the Vienna Symphony; and Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben with the Munich Philharmonic and many others.

In 2005, he brought Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen to the International Beijing Music Festival, marking the first-ever performances of the complete Ring in China. He returned to the Beijing Music Festival in 2008, conducting Tannhäuser with the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin. Maestro Auguin has made appearances at numerous other prestigious festivals, including the Salzburg Festival, where he conducted the opening Mozart matinee and Beethoven’s Fidelio with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.

Other exceptional performances include: Teatro a la Scala's Don Giovanni, Le Nozze di Figaro, Macbeth, La Forze del Destino and others; The Royal Opera House Covent Garden's Carmen, Tosca, Un Ballo en Maschera, La Traviata, etc.; The Royal Albert Hall's La Traviata; LA Opera’s Doktor Faust; Le Grand Théâtre de Genève’s Der Rosenkavalier; and the New Tokyo Opera’s Tannhäuser.

As a symphonic conductor, he has led concert performances with the Vienna Philharmonic, Staatskapelle Dresden, the Munich Philharmonic, the Orchestre National de France, the BBC Symphony London, the Royal Philharmonic, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, the China Philharmonic, the Hong Kong Philharmonic, the NHK Philharmonic in Tokyo, the Korean Broadcasting System Symphony, etc. 

Philippe Auguin’s broad symphonic repertoire spans the canon, reaching from early music to the emblematic works of Bruckner, Strauss, Stravinsky and Bartok, and the complete symphonic works of Gustav Mahler. Also renowned for his work with contemporary composers, Mo. Auguin has conducted pieces by Hans-Werner Henze, Peter Maxwell Davies, Aribert Reimann, Peter Ruzicka, and Pierre Boulez.

Philippe Auguin studied conducting in Vienna and Florence. He was the assistant conductor and musical assistant of Herbert von Karajan until 1989. From this date, Sir Georg Solti chose him as his assistant conductor for opera productions and concerts in Salzburg, Vienna, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, and Milan. He conducted the London Symphony in Westminster Abbey at the memorial for Sir Georg Solti in 1998.

In 2015, Philippe Auguin recorded with the Vienna Philharmonic the Opera sequences (La Nozze di Figaro, Turandot) used in the film Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, directed by Christopher McQuarrie, starring Tom Cruise and Rebecca Ferguson (Paramount Pictures). 

Maestro Auguin was made an Honorary Consul of the French Republic in 2002. For his contribution to German culture, he was awarded the Cross of Federal Merit of the German Republic in 2005.