First Prize winner and Special Prize of the Orchestra at the 8th International Jorma Panula Conducting Competition, Nathanaël Iselin is a young French conductor currently based in Scandinavia and the Netherlands. He is the Conductor-in-Residence of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra.
In the 2021-2022 season, Nathanaël has made his debuts with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra (Bruckner 3rd Symphony), the Orchestre National de Montpellier (Mozart 31st Symphony), as well as the Lahti Symphony Orchestra (Ravel Ma Mère l’Oye). In May and June 2021 he conducted the Aarhus Symphony Orchestra, in pieces such as Sibelius 2nd symphony, Ravel Piano Concerto in G, and Prokofiev 1st Piano Concerto. These concerts were followed by an immediate reinvitation and an appointment as Assistant Conductor of the Aarhus Symphony Orchestra for the 2021-2022 season. At the end of his tenure in Aarhus, he was appointed Conductor-in-Residence of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra for the 2022-2023 season. Back in 2019 he conducted the Copenhagen Philharmonic in a performance for Her Majesty the Queen of Denmark.
On the lyrical scene, Nathanaël regularly conducts at Opera Hedeland, Denmark, where he led fully-staged youth audience productions of Carmen and Rigoletto. He recently recorded Peter Heise’s opera Drot og Marsk. He will return in 2023 to conduct the whole production of La Cenerentola. He also worked at the Bern Opera, Switzerland, as a second conductor and assistant for a production of Smetana’s The Bartered Bride.
Nathanaël Iselin has studied orchestra conducting in four of the most prestigious music universities in Europe : the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris, the Hochschule der Künste in Zürich and the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen. Whilst a student he has been mentored by such renowned conductors as Iván Fischer, Mariss Jansons, Fabio Luisi, Susanna Mälkki, Sakari Oramo, Michael Schønwandt, Giordano Bellincampi, Johannes Schlaefli, Thomas Søndergård, Alexander Vedernikov, Simone Young and Jaap van Zweden.
During his education and on various occasions, Nathanaël conducted such orchestras as the Orchestre National de France, the Singapore Symphony, the Netherlands Philharmonic, the Danish Radio, the Finnish Radio, Helsinki Philharmonic, Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie Konstanz, on a varied repertoire including symphonies and concertos by Beethoven, Brahms, Mahler, Shostakovich, Tchaikovsky, contemporary music and operatic repertoire.
His studies at the Paris Conservatoire have given him both a love of and an insight into the music of French impressionism such as Debussy’s Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune and Ravel’s Ma Mère l’Oye. Considering himself a citizen of Europe, he has lived in Denmark, Switzerland, France, Iceland, the Netherlands and Finland, taking the chance to deepen his love for Finnish music – Sibelius and Rautavaara in particular.
As a percussionist, he has performed with the Ensemble Intercontemporain-CNSMDP, the Limoges Opera, the Nouvelle Europe Orchestra, led by conductors such as David Zinman, Dennis Russell Davies and Matthias Pintscher.