Maestro move: Winnipeg lands a music director

Maestro move: Winnipeg lands a music director


norman lebrecht

February 15, 2018

The excellent Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra has been searching for a music director for several months after Alexander Mickelthwaite moved on to Oklahoma.

Last night, they reached a decision.

The new music director, starting in September, is the well-travelled Daniel Raiskin, who holds additional posts with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Tenerife, the Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra and St. Michael Strings in Finland.

Raiskin, 47, originally from St Petersburg, has made numerous recordings with international soloists. He was chosen on the basis of three appearances in Winnipeg.



  • James says:

    Given Raiskin’s track record on disc, I hope the orchestra will undertake some recording projects. This is a fine ensemble, full of talented and versatile players, but it is rarely heard outside Winnipeg.

    • Vincent says:

      I mean, they got a Juno for a recording last year and are nominated for another this year, so it’s not like they aren’t doing any recording.

      • James says:

        Good point! Both fine recordings indeed. I look forward to great things ahead! Since moving to Winnipeg, I have been consistently impressed by the orchestra’s sound and by the quality of the players, and it is sure to remain one of the city’s treasures.

  • msc says:

    “Alexander Mickelthwaite moved on to Oklahoma”: interesting to see where Winnipeg ranks. Does Raiskin have enough time?

  • Trudy Schroeder says:

    We have a very good feeling about the possibilities with this new music director. The connection with the orchestra is very good. There is a good tradition of music directors here and their ambitions for the orchestra, In recent years, Bramwell Tovey, Andrey Boreyko, and Alexander Mickelthwate have each brought contributions to the culture and musical excellence of the WSO. The New Music Festival founded by Bramwell Tovey is only one of the quite remarkable things about the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Excellent players, great community support, strong board, strong finances, excellent administrative team, thriving Sistema program, community engagement, and a commitment to the value of great symphonic music to the local, national, and international community.