Simon Crawford-Phillips

achieving an expressive intensity that made for compelling listening.

The Guardian

an enthralling figure both as a musician and a stage persona… energetic, fast, constantly and thrillingly on the front foot.

Västmanlands Tidning

Simon Crawford-Phillips

Conductor / Director / Pianist

Simon is a multi-festival director, conductor, renowned pianist, creative programmer with a passion for championing contemporary repertoire, and a chamber musician who regularly collaborates with artists such as Daniel Hope, Lawrence Power, Roderick Williams and Anne Sofie von Otter in repertoire from Haydn and Schumann to Adès, Byström, Dean and Reich. His own ensembles include The Kungsbacka Piano Trio and Stockholm Syndrome Ensemble (resident artists at Stockholm Konzerthus). Simon is the Artistic Director of the Change Music Festival in Norra Halland, Västerås Music Festival and Co-Artistic Director of the Wye Valley Chamber Music Festival as well as Chief Conductor & Artistic Advisor of Västerås Sinfonietta, alongside multiple guesting roles.

Simon’s spicy and eclectic programming is reflected in an extraordinarily varied career as a conductor/director alongside his solo collaborations. His triumphant season has included conducting debuts with Royal Swedish Opera in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which was Norman Lebrecht’s Opera of the week and SvenskaDagbladet wrote “The Swedish Royal Opera Orchestra under the direction of Simon Crawford-Phillips manage to reveal the myriad of temperament and structure that the music contains, without the dreaminess disappearing”; Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, the world premiere of Börtz Violin Concerto for One with Malin Broman and Norrköpings Symfoniorkester; directing the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra in a joint programme with Pekka Kuusisto; and the world premiere of a new double concerto from Finnish composer Sauli Zinovjev for him as director/soloist and Hugo Ticciati with Tapiola Sinfonietta.

Royal Swedish Opera – A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Upcoming conducting debuts for Simon include Swedish Royal Philharmonic, Helsinki Philharmonic, Scottish Chamber Orchestra with Pekka Kuusisto, Swedish Chamber Orchestra and Neubrandenburg Philharmonic Orchestra in Britten and Berlioz. Reinvites include Uppsala, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra, Nordic Chamber Orchestra, Jönköping Sinfonietta and Musica Vitae for a programme of Tippett, Wallen, Gerswhin & Bloch.

Recent conducting engagements include Gothenburg Symphony, Uppsala (world premiere of Monnakgotla Saxophone Concerto with Johannes Thorell), Helsingborg Symphony, Dalasinfoniettan Nordic Chamber Orchestra, directing Sinfonia Varsovia in Warsaw’s LutosÅ‚awski Chain Festival. Simon has also conducted the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Nash Ensemble, the Swedish Radio Symphony, Aalborg Symphony, Polish Chamber, and English Chamber orchestras.

Other regular collaborators include artists such as Colin Currie, Anthony Marwood, Truls Mørk, Phillip Moore, Michael Schade, Roman Simović, Torleif Thedéen, and the Danish and Elias string quartets. Passionate about contemporary music Simon has recently given world premieres of music by Thomas Adès, Britta Byström, Steve Reich and Mark-Anthony Turnage as well as working alongside composers Sofia Gubaidulina, Simon Holt, Colin Matthews and Huw Watkins.

In 2017 Simon was appointed Artistic Adviser and Chief Conductor of Västerås Sinfonietta. He has broadened the Sinfonietta’s reach and repertoire as well as launching the Sinfonietta’s own festival. Västerås Sinfonietta’s recent disc release, for BIS, features the world premiere recording of Albert Schnelzer’s Burn my letters and A Freak in Burbank.

Albert Schnelzer - Burn my Letters. World Premiere recording with Västerås Sinfonietta on BIS Records

As a pianist The Guardian says Simon has “profound sensitivity and technical brilliance, achieving an expressive intensity that made for compelling listening.” He performs in premiere festivals and concert halls across Europe including Verbier, Schleswig-Holstein, Edinburgh, and at Wigmore Hall where he appears as the regular pianist with Chamber Ensemble in Residence, the acclaimed Nash Ensemble, and in recital with Daniel Hope, Lawrence Power, and Phillip Moore. Notable concerto debuts include the NHK Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Alan Gilbert, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra under Ilan Volkov and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra directing from the keyboard.

Simon Crawford-Phillips and Lawrence Power – Debussy Beau Soir

Passionate about contemporary music Simon has recently given world premieres of music by Thomas Adès, Britta Byström, Steve Reich and Mark-Anthony Turnage as well as working alongside composers Sofia Gubaidulina, Simon Holt, Colin Matthews and Huw Watkins.

Simon’s numerous recordings include Fanny and Felix for dB Productions with Malin Broman and award-winning Swedish string orchestra, Musica Vitae, The Kungsbacka Trio have released two volumes of Complete Schumann Piano Trios on BIS, and the Stockholm Syndrome Ensemble released Voices of Angels (Dean, Gubaidulina, Rachmaninov). Simon also appears with the Nash Ensemble for Hyperion (Fanny Mendelssohn and Clara Schumann), and Västerås Sinfonietta’s recording, Nightingale. In addition to radio and television broadcasts in Europe, Australia and Japan Simon has also presented concerts for Sweden’s classical music radio station P2.

The Kungsbacka Trio – Fauré Piano Quartet No. 2

A renowned teacher, Simon was elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in 2010 and currently teaches at the Gothenburg Academy of Music and Drama. Recent guest teaching has included the Schymberg masterclasses in Sweden together with Anne Sofie von Otter and chamber music at Indiana University in Bloomington and the University of Colorado.

For further projects and for print, please download Simon’s full biography.

This biography is for information only, and should not be re-printed. Please use the link below to download the version for concert programmes.

Download 2023-24 Biography (.docx)

Download 2022-23 Official Publicity Photo (.jpg) - Credit: Nikolaj Lund

Download 2022-23 Conducting Publicity Photo (.jpg) - Credit: Nikolaj Lund