Conductor Biography [744 words]

Kelly Lovelady — Conductor Biography [744 words]

Kelly Lovelady is an Australian conductor based in London and in increasing demand abroad. She has worked with ensembles across the UK, US, Canada, Europe and Australia and enjoyed repeat invitations to conduct for Opera Holland Park, City of London Festival, Cluster New Music & Integrated Arts Festival, Cortona Sessions for New Music, Pop Montreal International Music Festival, Greenpeace, Brighton Fringe and the Tait Memorial Trust. Kelly has appeared with soloists including Lara St. John, John Williams, Emma Pearson, Charlotte Church, Amy Dickson and Jayson Gillham; and has assisted conductors including Vladimir Jurowski, Otto Tausk, Brad Cohen, Beatrice Venezi, Jürg Henneberger and Richard Bonynge.

Career highlights have included co-conductor with Ilan Volkov at BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra; rehearsal conductor to the renowned London Sinfonietta; and Musical Director for the inaugural production by Gothic Opera, Der Vampyr, nominated for Best Opera Production in the 2019 Off West End Awards.

In recent years Kelly has served as Assistant Conductor to the London Philharmonic Orchestra under Vladimir Jurowski, Konzert und Theater Sankt Gallen under Otto Tausk (Written on Skin), Opera Holland Park under Brad Cohen (Ariadne auf Naxos) and Beatrice Venezi (L’amico Fritz), Richard Bonynge for Naxos Records; and rehearsal conductor for Simon Rattle’s Young Orchestra for London and LSO Soundhub. In Summer 2021 Kelly assisted Ensemble Phoenix Basel and Ensemble SoloVoices under Jürg Henneberger for the world premiere production of the new Michael Hersch/Stephanie Fleischmann opera, Poppaea, at ZeitRäume Basel and Wien Modern.

Kelly is the founding Artistic Director and conductor of Ruthless Jabiru, a London chamber orchestra dedicated to promoting humanitarian, sustainability and social justice stories through New music. In 2019 Ruthless Jabiru made its Grimeborn Festival debut with Silk Moth: a fully-staged programme of music by Bushra El-Turk, Liza Lim and Cassandra Miller exploring female dis/empowerment in so-called honour crimes. Previous projects by Ruthless Jabiru have examined narratives around asylum policy, ethical sponsorship in the cultural sector, historic nuclear testing at Maralinga, and an homage to poet and Activist Oodgeroo Noonuccal. The orchestra is currently in development for its debut album showcasing the music of composer Soosan Lolavar for release on the Nonclassical label.

Her commitment to advocacy work led to Kelly’s selection for elite participation in the Creative Climate Leadership programme coordinated by Julie’s Bicycle: an intensive for artists and cultural professionals to explore the cultural dimensions of climate change and take action with impact, creativity and resilience.

Kelly has performed at venues including the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse at Shakespeare’s Globe, LSO St Luke’s, Union Chapel, Australia House London, Winnipeg Art Gallery and the Société des Arts Technologiques Montréal. She made her City of London Festival debut with the launch of Ruthless Jabiru in 2011 in a performance named by one reviewer as “the most enjoyable concert” of the festival; as a result of which she was presented to HM The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh at Buckingham Palace as an Australian cultural ambassador.

Further notable engagements include an Artist Residency at Cluster New Music & Integrated Arts Festival in Winnipeg, Canada, where she devised and conducted three major operatic projects by emerging Canadian composers Matthew Ricketts, Luke Nickel and Heidi Ouellette. 

From 2005-2012 Kelly was the founding Artistic Director of the Live Art and chamber ensemble experimental project Pazzia Collective, through which she created 25 unique festival pieces across three continents.

Kelly trained at the University of Western Australia and the University of Manitoba, Canada and has been the recipient of numerous grants and awards. She has participated in over 20 conducting masterclasses across Europe, Australia, Canada and the US and is mentored by American conductor Kenneth Kiesler. Kelly recently completed a Certificate of Advanced Study in Curating Contemporary Music at Hochschule für Musik Basel.

Kelly has been engaged as a panellist by the Australian Music Centre, Australian Performing Rights Association, International Society for Contemporary Music, Sound and Music, Tait Memorial Trust and the Australia & New Zealand Festival of Literature & Arts; a guest for BBC World Service, BBC Radio London, ABC Radio National and CKUW 95.9 Winnipeg; and as a mentor by the Foundation for International Education London. 

Kelly’s propensity for New music has also led to her acclaim as a scorereader for a roster of clients including the BBC, the London Symphony, London Philharmonic and Philharmonia Orchestras, London Sinfonietta, Britten Sinfonia, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, the Barbican and Southbank Centres; and for pianists including Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Igor Levit, Mitsuko Uchida, Tamara Stefanovich, Nicolas Hodges and Jeremy Denk.

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