Australian-born conductor Nicholas Milton has established an outstanding reputation for his charismatic stage presence and thrilling interpretations of an extensive repertoire spanning both concert and opera. Renowned for his dynamic conducting style, energy, and compelling musical integrity, the immediacy of Milton’s rapport with musicians continues to captivate orchestras and audiences alike.
Nicholas Milton has recently been named General Music Director and Chief Conductor of the State Opera House (Saarländisches Staatstheater) in Saarbrücken, Germany and commenced this major appointment in September, 2014.
Appointed as one of the youngest-ever concertmasters of a major Australian orchestra, Milton enjoyed a distinguished career as a violinist and chamber musician before dedicating himself exclusively to conducting. Now based in Europe, he is a regular guest at several leading opera houses. He has appeared for six consecutive seasons as a guest conductor at the Volksoper in Vienna, where he has conducted countless performances of Die Fledermaus, The Magic Flute, La traviata, Carmen, and Hänsel und Gretel. In 2013, he conducted the acclaimed new John Bell production of Tosca for Opera Australia in Sydney. Other recent productions include La fanciulla del West in Innsbruck, The Flying Dutchman in Dortmund, Don Pasquale in Linz, Don Giovanni in Leipzig, The Magic Flute at the Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz, Munich, and Carmen and Die Fledermaus at the Komische Oper in Berlin. In 2013, he served as Assistant Conductor to Mariss Jansons on an extensive European and United States tour with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
In the current season, in addition to his chief conductor responsibilities in Saarbrücken, Canberra and Sydney, he will conduct Tosca for Opera Australia at the Sydney Opera House, performances of Die Fledermaus in Stuttgart, The Tales of Hoffmann in Berlin and a new production with Rolando Villazón in Vienna in 2015 - as well as return engagements with the Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, Dortmunder Philharmoniker, Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, Philharmonisches Orchester Freiburg, and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.
Nicholas Milton was Concertmaster of the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra (1996–2002) and leader of Australia’s renowned Macquarie Trio (1998–2005). He served as General Music Director of the Jena Philharmonic Orchestra from 2004 until 2010. Since 2001, he has been Chief Conductor of the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra and, since 2007, Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. He will continue to serve as Chief Conductor of the Innviertler Symphony Orchestra of Austria until 2017.