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Tianyi Lu joins WNO as first Female Conductor in Residence

19 August 2019

Welsh National Opera is pleased to welcome Tianyi Lu as the first Conductor in Residence. This follows an open call for aspiring conductors to apply for the post and an audition process with WNO Orchestra earlier this year.

The Conductor in Residence scheme was developed following WNO’s ‘Where Are All the Women?’ symposium in 2018 which identified challenges facing women in the classical music industry. The 18 month scheme aims to equip aspiring female conductors with the necessary training and experience to pursue conducting careers. Tianyi will work closely with WNO Music Director Tomáš Hanus and the WNO Orchestra across a range of repertoire, including main scale opera, as well as youth and community projects.

Born in Shanghai and raised in New Zealand, Tianyi Lu studied in Auckland and Melbourne before completing a Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama with Distinction in 2015. It was during her studies in Cardiff that Tianyi first worked with WNO, joining the Youth and Community team on WNO Youth Opera’s award-winning production Kommilitonen!


I am thrilled to be back in Cardiff, my second home, to work with the many creative and courageous individuals that make up the vibrant organisation that is WNO. The Company has inspired me for many years and I will relish the opportunity to dive into the diverse range of projects during my post over the next 18 months.


Tianyi is currently the Assistant Conductor of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and Principal Conductor of the St Woolos Sinfonia based in Newport, and was a Dudamel Fellow with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra in 2017/2018. Her recent highlights include concerts with the Gulbenkian Orchestra, both in Lisbon and on tour in Portugal, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra, Bucharest Radio Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Symphony, Hallé Orchestra and Auckland Philharmonia.

Tianyi Lu begins her residency in August, working on the new production of Carmen, as well as observing preparatory work on Rigoletto and The Cunning Little Vixen. Tianyi will be Assistant Conductor for the Spring performances of Carmen, conducting two performances at Liverpool Empire on 26 and 28 March.