Philadelphia Orchestra’s Nathalie Stutzmann on her path to the podium, new prospects for women conductors

Posted on: December 21, 2020

“She is known as a contralto turned conductor, but in reality, conducting has been at the forefront of Nathalie Stutzmann’s thinking for decades,” writes Peter Dobrin in Saturday’s (12/19) Philadelphia Inquirer. “The French musician [was] newly named principal guest conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra starting with the 2021-22 season. Q: People think of you as a singer and as new to conducting. But that’s not really the case, is it? Stutzmann: When I was growing up, I studied as a pianist, a bassoonist, I even played viola…. I really grew up as a musician first as a teenager conducting in class. It took two years for me to completely understand that it was a time when a woman on the podium was not yet possible. Q: How different are things now for women conductors? Stutzmann: … Things have improved…. Young women conductors now have much more opportunity than in the past…. What is incredibly difficult still is for a woman to get a position. We see great orchestras always having women coming for a week to guest conduct. It’s very important to see in the next years more women in the crucial positions of music director and principal guest conductor.”