Elim Chan believes that »head, heart and body have to find unity when you’re conducting. It’s about expressing music with your hands and developing a strong language of your own«. The precise gestures of this young artist together with the natural malleability of her creative shaping have won her considerable acclaim both in North America and in Europe.
In January 2022, Boston Classical Review spoke of a »miracle of control and understanding« after Elim Chan’s debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Only a few months later, the reactions to this young conductor’s first collaboration with the Cleveland Orchestra were no less enthusiastic and whose form that evening, »came seductively close to its ideal« under Elim Chan’s conducting.
No other conductor of her generation is in such demand with the top orchestras on both continents, nor do they consistently encounter such high-quality soloists. This artist, born in 1986 in Hong Kong, has an extremely diverse repertoire of symphonic literature from the classic to the contemporary.
Elim Chan has been Chief Conductor of the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra since 2019 and since 2018 has been a permanent Guest Conductor with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. In the 2022-23 season, the Wiener Musikverein is dedicating a four-part portrait series to Chan which, in addition to her debut with the Wiener Sinfoniker, also includes concerts with the ORF Radio Symphonieorchester and the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. She will also be touring Spain’s musical centres with the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra.
Further highlights of the season include her debuts with the Pittsburgh and San Francisco Symphony Orchestras, with orchestras in Toronto, Cincinnati and Atlanta, as well as an invitation to return to the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Her European sphere of activity will include debuts with the Orchestre de Paris, the Oslo Philharmonic, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Deutsche Symphonie Orchester Berlin.
Elim Chan studied at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts and at the University of Michigan. In 2014, she was the first woman to win the Donatella Flick Conducting Competition which came with a one-year post at the London Symphony Orchestra as Assistant Conductor, working with Valery Gergiev. The following season saw Chan take part in the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Dudamel Fellowship Programme. Chan is also grateful for invaluable artistic stimulus from Bernard Haitink, whose masterclasses in Lucerne she attended in 2015.