Antony Hermus (b. 1973) only really became a pianist after first obtaining a degree and a job in administration. He came to conducting more or less by chance. Once, at a rehearsal for a concert at which he was the soloist, the conductor fell ill, and as Hermus was in the habit of studying the orchestral parts as well, he was asked to take his place. Having been bitten by the conducting bug, he decided to move to Germany and to work as a general assistant at an opera house. He ended up as rehearsal conductor and has never looked back.
Principal Guest Conductor of the North Netherlands Orchestra and Artistic Advisor of the National Youth Orchestra of the Netherlands, Antony Hermus has in recent years guested at numerous German opera houses and conducted all the orchestras in his native Netherlands and many in the UK, too. His core orchestral repertoire centres on the Late Romantics, but not to the exclusion of contemporary music. He is very familiar with Unsuk Chin’s piano concerto, which he conducted most recently with Francesco Piemontesi as the soloist with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Follow Antony Hermus on Twitter @antonyhermus
Born in Locarno in 1983, Swiss-Italian pianist Francesco Piemontesi is one of the most interesting young pianists on the circuit today. The recipient of numerous prizes and invitations to appear with the world’s greatest orchestras and at the most traditional festivals, he finally gained worldwide recognition on winning third prize in the Queen Elisabeth Competition in 2007. He has since appeared at such illustrious venues as the Vienna Musikverein, Carnegie Hall and the Berlin Philharmonie, at the BBC Proms, La Roque d’Anthéron and the Edinburgh Festival and is himself Artistic Director of the Settimane Musical di Ascona festival.
Piemontesi believes in practising works he hopes will be in his repertoire for decades to come. He has released highly-acclaimed discs on several labels but nowadays records exclusively for Naïve Classics.