Mariss Jansons is arguably the best conductor of today. His repertoire consists of conducting early to contemporary music works of great composers such as Mahler, Bruckner, Mussorgsky, Dvorak, Shostakovich, Stravinsky, Strauss, Beethoven, Debussy and Poulenc. He is particularly celebrated for his work with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
Mariss Jansons is the son of the renowned conductor Arvids Jansons and singer Araida Jansons. As a child Jansons first studied violin with his father. When his father joined the Leningrad Philharmonic, Mariss Jansons enrolled at the Leningrad Conservatory, where he studied piano and conducting. He continued his studies in Vienna and in Salzburg, with Hans Swarowsky and Herbert von Karajan.
In 1971 he became a laureate of the Karajan Competition in Berlin and began his close partnership with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, first as an assistant to Yevgeny Mravinsky and then as a permanent conductor. From 1979 to 2000 Jansons served as Music Director of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. Under his tenure, the orchestra earned international acclaim and undertook tours to leading concert halls around the world. Between 1997 and 2004 he was Principal Conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and in the 2003–2004 season he took over leadership of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, where he is extending his contract until 2021; he began his tenure as head of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in the 2004–2005 season, and ended it in 2015. Jansons is guest conductor of the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonic Orchestras (in Vienna 2016 he conducted the New Year’s concert for the third time); he has additionally conducted the leading orchestras in the U.S.A. and Europe.