Schwarz has an existing close relationship with the TSO, engaged in 2017 for a year-long appointment as Assistant Conductor during which time she toured China with the orchestra and was involved in a range of key projects. Concurrent with her previous TSO engagement she served as both Assistant Conductor of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra and Assistant Conductor to Mikko Franck at the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France (2017-2018).
She is one of four participants selected for the prestigious Los Angeles Philharmonic’s 2018-2019 Dudamel Fellowship Program, launched by Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Music Director Gustavo Dudamel in 2009, which will see her conduct at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in November and December this year.
In her role as Associate Conductor she will conduct a wide range of projects with the TSO which will include her debut in the main series, recordings, family and education concerts and the TSO’s leading elite training programs.
Schwarz’s engagement is, in part, funded by the estate of the late Dr Louise Crossley, whose 2015 bequest to the TSO was intended to develop and identify opportunities for women conductors. Schwarz will continue to play a key role in the Louise Crossley Conducting Workshop - the first of which she led this year - an elite conducting training opportunity with a focus on female conductors of university age and above.
TSO Managing Director Nicholas Heyward said, ‘Elena has a great rapport with the orchestra and we are delighted to have her join the Artistic Leadership tem in an ongoing role. It’s been wonderful to watch her mature as a conductor and we’re very pleased to continue to be a part of her journey as her international career goes from strength to strength.’
Of her appointment Schwarz said, ‘The collaboration with TSO and my tenure as assistant in 2017 have been instrumental in my development as a conductor, and I’m delighted to continue to work with the wonderful musicians and team. I’m honoured by the appointment to associate conductor and I look forward to returning regularly to Tasmania.’
Schwarz joins an enviably strong list of titled conductors at the TSO which will consist of recently announced new Chief Conductor and Artistic Director Eivind Aadland, who commences a three-year engagement in 2020, Principal Guest Conductor Johannes Fritzsch and Marko Letonja who concludes his 7-year tenure as current Chief Conductor and has been named TSO Conductor Laureate, in a three-year appointment.