home       schedule    

CONTACT JULIAN:    julianpellicano@gmail.com

(photo: Iris Rogers)

A conductor with expansive musical interests, Julian Pellicano is a formidable interpreter of the symphonic repertoire as well as a versatile conductor in a diverse blend of genres. The Winnipeg Free Press says of Pellicano, “His versatility is truly astonishing…” and “…superbly led by WSO resident maestro Julian Pellicano, [the orchestra] took their pride of place and became key players – ostensibly another character – during the 142-minute production…” 

Julian Pellicano is currently the Resident Conductor of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra where he conducts on all of the orchestra’s various concert series. Pellicano has gained extensive experience conducting films live with orchestra, and conducts a wide variety of Pops, Kids, Special and other community outreach concerts with the WSO in addition to conducting, hosting and helping to develop the orchestra’s robust and innovative education concerts that reach over 15,000 Winnipeg students annually. 

During 2017 - 2018 season Pellicano will conduct and perform at the inaugural edition of the Ciclo de Música Contemporánea in Oviedo, Spain, he will return to the Louisiana Philharmonic conducting Jurassic Park live with the orchestra, return to the Orquestra de Valencia, and he will make his first appearance conducting the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. 2017-2018 marks Pellicano’s fifth season at the WSO with highlights including a WSO Masterworks Series concert conducting Handel’s Messiah, directing the Winnipeg New Music Festival Composer’s Workshop, Chaplin’s City Lights and the Wizard of Oz live with the WSO as well as a staged production of A Chorus Line in collaboration with Rainbow Stage among many other concerts in his busy schedule.

Pellicano has built his career by following an unconventional path. The creation, with Dr. Paul Lehrman, of a new performance edition of George Antheil's Ballet Mecanique first brought Pellicano to the public’s attention.Conductor of the Norfolk Contemporary Ensemble since 2008, Pellicano is recognized for his transparent interpretations of contemporary music. His many premieres include the first performances of Martin Bresnick’s critically acclaimed opera My Friend's Story at the International Festival of Arts and Ideas, the first American performance of Hans Werner Henze’s Drei Geistliche Konzerte with trumpeter Joel Brennan. In 2010, he released a recording of Ingram Marshall’s Peaceable Kingdom with the Yale Philharmonia on New World Records and recently recorded music by Australian composer Nicole Murphy for Elm City Records. Pellicano has toured Turkey conducting new pieces that blend both western and Turkish classical instruments, collaborated with Soprano/Director Susan Narucki and the Kallisti Ensemble conduting Pascal Dusapin's opera To Be Sung, and has performed with many world-class soloists including Ann Schein, Thomas Meglioranza, composer/pianist Timo Andres, and electric guitarist Andy Summers (The Police).

Pellicano was a recipient of the 2008 Presser Music Award which allowed him to travel to observe world-renowned conductors Simon Rattle, Daniel Barenboim, David Robertson, Bernard Haitink, John Adams and Michael Tilson Thomas in rehearsal with the great orchestras of the world. He studied conducting as a fellow at the Yale School of Music where he was assistant conductor of the Yale Philharmonia Orchestra, working with Music Director Shinik Hahm as well as assisting guest conductors including Sir Neville Marriner, Helmuth Rilling, Reinbert De Leeuw and Peter Oundjian. Other principal conducting teachers have included Dr. Harlan Parker and Per Andersberg 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.

From 2009 to 2013 he served as music director of the Longy School of Music Conservatory Orchestra where he developed the orchestra’s repertoire, engaged world-class soloists, and establishing a rigorous and distinctive new orchestral program. In 2013, he joined the conducting faculty of the University of Manitoba where he serves as Music Director of the University of Manitoba Symphony Orchestra.

As a young musician he played drums, percussion, Rhodes piano, and accordion in rock, blues and jazz groups. An autodidact, he was accepted to the Peabody Conservatory as a percussionist without typical classical training, and continued his percussion studies at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Sweden and at the Yale School of Music where he was a student of Robert van Sice and was a member of the critically acclaimed Yale Percussion Group. Pellicano also holds a degree in philosophy from The Johns Hopkins University.

In addition to the Presser Music Award, he has been recognized with two stipends from the Royal Swedish Academy of Music, and Yale’s Phillip F. Nelson Award.