October 7, 2018 9:30 am

‘The greatest thing about music is the joy of sharing’: Winnipeg orchestra’s new music director

WATCH: International conductor Daniel Raiskin, the new music director of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, shares his passion for music with Global News Morning.


Daniel Raiskin may be new to Winnipeg, but he’s certainly no stranger to the city.

Raiskin started the 2018-19 season as the new music director of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. He was a guest conductor with the orchestra three times prior to his appointment.

Raiskin replaces long-time music director Alexander Mickelthwate, who left the WSO at the end of the 2017-18 season to lead the Oklahoma City Philharmonic.

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READ MORE: Music director Alexander Mickelthwate to leave WSO, heading to Oklahoma

Raiskin was raised in St. Petersburg, Russia where he began his studies in music.

“My father is a very well known musicologist,” Raiskin said.

“Music was maybe the first thing I heard in our cramped apartment in St. Petersburg.”

He began playing violin at the age of six, and took up viola before studying conducting. Eventually, Raiskin moved to Amsterdam to pursue his studies.

“I worked through the ranks of orchestra musicians into being a recognized soloist and a conductor. The travels came with that,” Raiskin said.

“The greatest thing about music is the joy of sharing,” Raiskin said.

“So when I came to Winnipeg, what struck me was the organic easiness with which I could communicate my ideas and share my views with musicians who are very receptive and very curious.”

READ MORE: Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra to recreate a Beatles show

Before making the switch to the WSO, Raiskin was a principal guest conductor with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Tenerife in Spain and the Belgrade Philharmonic orchestra in Serbia. He’s also led both the Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie in Germany and the Artur Rubinstein Philharmonic Orchestra in Poland as Chief Conductor.

RELATED: With deadline looming, WSO hopes to purchase Pantages Playhouse Theatre

For the full 2018-19 schedule, visit the WSO website here.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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