Jonathon Heyward

Assistant Conductor & Hallé Youth Orchestra Music Director

One of the most exciting conductors of his generation, Jonathon Heyward is our Assistant Conductor from the 2016-2017 season. The two year appointment will involve assisting Music Director Sir Mark Elder and other visiting artists, acting as Music Director of the Hallé Youth Orchestra and conducting concerts with the Hallé.

Earlier in the season, Jonathon won the 54th International Competition for Young Conductors in Besançon, winning the Grand Prize aged only 23: “Jonathon Heyward embraces music with the enthusiasm and vigor of a twenty three year old. With sweeping but precise gestures, The Chairman Dances swung in an irresistible and colourful way.” (

In upcoming seasons the young American will conduct the Orchestre National de Bordeaux-Aquitaine, St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra, Sinfonieorchester Basel, Prague Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de l’Opéra de Rouen and Philharmonie Zuidnederland.

Originally a cellist, Jonathon commenced his conducting studies at The Boston Conservatory in the class of Andrew Altenbach. Between 2012 and 2014 he occupied the position of Assistant Conductor for the conservatory’s opera department. During his time there, he worked on various productions including La Bohème, Zauberflöte and The Rape of Lucretia. In 2013 he became the youngest ever semi-finalist at the Blue Danube International Opera Conducting Competition, where he was acclaimed for being “a fresh new talent, with exceptional musicianship”.

The Assistant Conductor position is supported by Sir Mark and Lady Elder, The Garrick Charitable Trust, Lord and Lady Lurgan Trust, D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust and PZ Cussons.

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