Hailed by “Die Welt” as “one of the most promising stars of tomorrow”, the young Greek conductor Dionysis Grammenos made his debut at the age of twenty-one with the Vienna Chamber Orchestra.
Having studied conducting at the Würzburg Music University under Ari Rasilainen, this season sees his return to the Canadian Opera Company Toronto, to work with Johannes Debus on a production of Eugene Onegin. Grammenos also returns to the Thailand Philharmonic Orchestra with a programme including Brahms’ Second Symphony and Elgar’s “In the South”. Further ahead in 2019, he will assist Christoph Eschenbach at the Konzerthausorchester Berlin on Mahler’s 8th Symphony during rehearsals for Eschenbach’s inaugural concert as Music Director.
Dionysis Grammenos is Founder and Music Director of the Greek Youth Symphony Orchestra. Established in 2017 in cooperation with the Greek National Opera, the orchestra aims to showcase and educate young talented Greek musicians in the symphonic and operatic repertory. The 2017/18 season has seen them present four concerts at the Great Hall of the Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center, home of the Greek National Opera. The newly created ensemble was recently able to win Christoph Eschenbach as President of the orchestra’s Honorary Board.
Grammenos has conducted orchestras such as the Festival Strings Lucerne, Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz, Hofer Symphoniker, Odessa Philharmonic, Junge Philharmonie Wien, Jyväskylä Sinfonia, Malta Philharmonic, and the New Symphony Orchestra of Sofia. He has been mentored by conductors including Bernhard Haitink, Robert Spano and Patrick Summers.
Passionate about opera, he has made his opera conducting debut in Würzburg with Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi in 2016 and has conducted a gala programme including Le Nozze di Figaro and Don Giovanni with the Greek Youth Symphony in June 2018. Further operatic experience includes Die Entführung aus dem Serail at Canadian Opera Company and La Clemenza di Tito at the Aspen Music Festival, where he was a Conducting Fellow in 2016.
Dionysis Grammenos was selected for the European Young Leaders 2018 programme under the patronage of Jean-Claude Juncker. The programme aims to promote a European identity by engaging the most promising talents in initiatives that will shape Europe’s future.
Grammenos initially trained as a clarinettist at the University of Music “Franz Liszt” in Weimar and was the first ever wind player to win the Grand Prix d’Eurovision from the European Broadcasting Union and was chosen “European Young Musician of the Year” by the same organisation. In 2013/14 he was selected for the ECHO Rising Stars programme, which took him to some of the Europe’s most prestigious venues. As a soloist, he has worked with orchestras such as the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, Norwegian Radio Symphony Orchestra, ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and the Royal Northern Sinfonia and has performed at venues including Carnegie Hall, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Barbican London and the Philharmonie Berlin. Still also active as a soloist, he performs this season with the Quatuor Zaide at the KKL in Lucerne, and appears with the Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie Konstanz, performing Weber’s Clarinet Concerto No. 2.
His debut CD as a clarinettist on the Naïve label features works by Spohr, Nielsen and Debussy with the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra and Ari Rasilainen. He has also recorded transcriptions by Schumann and Schubert in collaboration with the harpist Anneleen Lenaerts for Warner Classics. He has been honoured with the Leonardo da Vinci World Award of Arts and the Gold Medal of the City of Athens.