Career Milestones
2019 Named Principal Guest Conductor of the Fort Worth Symphony beginning in 2020-2021
2019 Opens the Atlanta Symphony’s 75th season, which features 16 ASO premieres
2019 Leads the world premiere of George Tsontakis’s Violin Concerto No. 3 with the Dallas Symphony
2019 Debuts with the NFM Wrocław Philharmonic
2018 Makes Met Opera debut with Nico Muhly’s Marnie
2018 Debuts with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic
2018 Conducts the world premiere of Voy a Dormir by Bryce Dessner at Carnegie Hall
2018 Conducts first joint project (Candide) between ASO and the Alliance Theatre
2016 Conducts Christopher Theofanidis’s Creation/Creator at the Kennedy Center’s 2017 Shift Festival, featuring singers Jessica Rivera, Sasha Cooke, Thomas Cooley, Nmon Ford and Evan Boyer, the ASO and ASO Chorus
2016 Leads Nixon in China at Houston Grand Opera
2016 Begins the two-year “LB/LB” celebration commemorating Leonard Bernstein and Ludwig van Beethoven at the ASO
2016 Conducts world premieres by Mark Buller, Michael Kurth, Michael Gandolfi, Jennifer Higdon
2016 Debut with the BBC National Orchestra Wales
2016 Celebrates the centennial anniversary of Robert Shaw’s birth with performances of Brahms’ Requiem and the world premiere of Jonathan Leshnoff’s Zohar in Atlanta and at Carnegie Hall
2016 Debuts with Orquestra Sinfonica Estado Sao Paulo; Melbourne Symphony @ Metropolis Festival
2016 Conducts world premieres by Michael Kurth, Mark Grey
2016 Leads cloth field: an art place of life, a collaborative conceptual exploration between Spano and choreographer Lauri Stallings
2015 10th consecutive season conducting at Carnegie Hall
2015 Conducts world premieres by Jennifer Higdon, Soren Nils Eichberg, Michael Gandolfi
2015 Conducts the Saito Kinen Orchestra in Japan as part of a gala performance celebrating Seiji Ozawa’s 80th birthday
2015 Conducts The Magic Flute at Houston Grand Opera
2015 Holds a conductor residency with the Colburn School Orchestra in Los Angeles, CA
2015 Debuts with the Danish National Orchestra, Orquestra Sinfonica Brasiliera, Malaysian Philharmonic
2014 Conducts The Classical Style written by Steven Stucky and Jeremy Denk and based upon the book of the same name by the late Charles Rosen at Ojai Music Festival and Carnegie Hall
2014 Conducts world premieres by Jonathan Leshnoff, Mark Grey, Bernard Rands, Charles Zoll
2014 Returns to Carnegie with the ASO and ASO Chorus for Britten’s War Requiem
2014 Debut with the Tampere Philharmonic
2013 Leads Orquesta La Pasión and members of Schola Cantorum de Venezuela with soprano Jessica Rivera and jazz vocalist Luciana Souza in Osvaldo Golijov’s La Pasión según San Marcos at Carnegie Hall
2013 Conducts world premieres by Michael Gandolfi, Richard Prior, and Ian Williams
2013 Tours as pianist with Kelley O’Connor and Jessica Rivera
2013 Debuts with Orquestra Sinfonica de Galicia and Yong Siew Toh Conservatory Orchestra (Singapore)
2013 Releases a digital recording of his solo piano work, Under Water, and a cycle of five songs written for soprano Jessica Rivera
2012 Named Music Director of the Aspen Music Festival and School
2012 Recital tour with Eric Owens
2012 Debuts with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, West Australian Symphony, and Sydney Symphony
2012 Conducts world premieres by Alvin Singleton and Adam Schoneberg with the ASO
2012 Leads Curtis Orchestra on tour to Dresden, Germany
2011 Named a Fellow of the Aspen Institute
2011 Named Music Director Designate of the Aspen Music Festival and School
2011 Receives Honorary Doctorate from Emory University
2010 Receives Honorary Doctorate from Oberlin
2010 Named Distinguished Artist in Residence at Emory University - an honor previously bestowed upon the Dalai Lama, Salman Rushdie and Jimmy Carter
2010-11 Celebrates ten years as Music Director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra with ten world premiere fanfares
2010 Leads world premiere of Jennifer Higdon's On a Wire with Eighth Blackbird and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
2010 Leads 20th Anniversary Choral Conducting Workshop for Carnegie Hall
2009 Conducts acclaimed performance of Stravinsky's The Nightengale in Carnegie Hall
2009 Receives Columbia University's Ditson Award
2009 Conducts second Ring Cycle for Seattle Opera
2008 Opens Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre in Alpharetta, Georgia
2007 Receives Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording for Osvaldo Golijov's Ainadamar
2000 Starts The Atlanta School of Composers
2008 Named Musical America's Conductor of the Year
2007 Records "La Boheme" live with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
2007 Opens Edinburgh Festival with BBC Scottish
2007 London Proms Debut with BBC Scottish
2006 Music Director of the Ojai Festival
2006 February/March Conducts the New York Philharmonic at Avery Fisher Hall; the Atlanta Symphony in Carnegie Hall; and the Atlanta Symphony for Great Performer's at Lincoln Center within a two week period.
2005 Conducts his first Ring cycle, Seattle
2001 to present Music Director, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
1996 to 2004 Music Director, Brooklyn Philharmonic
2005 (Telarc) Grammy Award for Berlioz Requiem "Best Choral Performance"
2003 and 2004 Director, Festival of Contemporary Music, Tanglewood
1998 to 2002 Head of the Conducting Fellowship Program at the Tanglewood Music Center.
2003 (Telarc) Grammy Award for Vaughan Williams A Sea Symphony "Best Classical Album" and "Best Choral Performance"
2003 April debut at the New York Philharmonic
2001 January debut with Seattle Opera (Billy Budd)
1999 January debut with Czech Philharmonic
1998 May debut with Orchestra Filarmonica della Scala
1997 February debut at Welsh National Opera (Carmen)
1996 November debut with Chicago Symphony Orchestra
1995 May debut at Royal Opera Covent Garden (Billy Budd)
1993 November debut with Cleveland Orchestra
1991 November debut with Philadelphia Orchestra
1991 February debut with Boston Symphony