Conductor Julian Pellicano has rapidly established himself as a leading interpreter of music across a broad spectrum of genres, traditions, and time periods, leading the Winnipeg Free Press to proclaim that “his versatility is truly astonishing.” Whether it be traditional and contemporary symphonic repertoire, classical and modern ballet, opera, films live with orchestra, pops, musical theatre, multi-media productions, workshops, or his carefully programmed concerts for young listeners, Julian brings an incisive musicality and collaborative spirit to every performance.
A committed interpreter of contemporary works, Julian has been an Artist in Residence at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival since 2008, where he conducts the Norfolk Contemporary Ensemble to workshop, premiere and record newly composed music each year. He has premiered dozens of compositions including the American premiere of Hans Werner Henze’s Drei Geistliche Konzerte, the premiere of Martin Bresnick’s critically acclaimed opera My Friend’s Story and led a film/recording project of music by Australian composer Nicole Murphy for Elm City Records. Julian has collaborated with Soprano/Director Susan Narucki and the Kallisti Ensemble in rare performances of Pascal Dusapin’s opera To Be Sung and in 2010 he released a recording of Ingram Marshall’s Peaceable Kingdom with the Yale Philharmonia on New World Records. He also toured throughout Turkey as part of a cross-cultural project blending both European and Turkish classical instruments in newly composed contemporary works by Eugene Birman and Spencer Topel and appeared at the first edition of the Ciclo de Música Contemporánea de Oviedo (Spain).
Pellicano studied conducting on fellowship at the Yale School of Music with Shinik Hahm and he has conducted in masterclasses with Kurt Masur, Peter Eötvös, Zsolt Nagy, Martyn Brabbins, Carl St. Clair, L’Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Other principal conducting teachers have included Harlan Parker and Per Andersberg.
Julian Pellicano’s career grew out of unconventional beginnings, performing as a self-taught drummer, percussionist, timpanist, and accordionist, in styles ranging from folk music to blues and jazz, rock and punk, as well as more traditional ensembles and orchestras. He went on to study percussion at the Peabody Conservatory under Jonathan Haas, the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Sweden under Anders Loguin, and the Yale School of Music under Robert Van Sice, where he was also a member of the critically acclaimed Yale Percussion Group. As a percussionist, he has performed in concert halls and festivals in North America, Europe and Asia and was notably the percussionist for the legendary composer Mauricio Kagel conducting his own music in one of his final concert tours throughout the Netherlands. He also holds a degree in Philosophy from The Johns Hopkins University.