Marin Alsop

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About Marin Alsop

Although she is far from being the first female conductor, Marin Alsop blazed a trail as one of the few women to follow a career path that was until recently almost the exclusive preserve of men. Her cheerful charisma and media-friendly personality have done much to normalize the presence of women on the podium for more than 20 years. Born in New York City in 1956, she held regional posts in the U.S. before becoming the principal conductor of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (2002-08), the music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (2007-21), the principal conductor of the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra (2012-19), and the chief conductor of the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra (since 2019)—the first woman to hold any of these positions. In 2013 she was also the first female conductor of the Last Night of the Proms. Initially a violinist, she studied at the Juilliard School before becoming one of the last conducting pupils of Leonard Bernstein. She has been assiduous in promoting her mentor’s work, unearthing much of his little-heard orchestral music and reaching far beyond his popular theater works and symphonies. Her other recordings—mostly for the Naxos label—feature American composers such as Barber, Ives, John Adams, John Corigliano, and Jennifer Higdon, and mainstream European repertoire including symphonies by Brahms, Dvořák, and Mahler.

New York, NY, United States
October 16, 1956

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