Regarded as a conductor of authority and warmth, and known for his thoughtful and idiomatic interpretations, Joseph Mechavich is one of North America’s foremost conductors. A brilliant collaborator, he is extolled for the exceptional artistry and infectious energy and joy he brings to every performance. In April of 2010, he was named Principal Conductor and Music Director for Kentucky Opera and has recently presided over performances of Il barbiere di Siviglia at The Washington National Opera, Porgy and Bess at Deutsche Oper Berlin, Madama Butterfly at New York City Opera, and Cendrillon at Aspen Music Festival. This season he will conduct L’elisir d’amore and Madama Butterfly for Kentucky Opera, a concert with the Oberlin Chamber Orchestra, concerts with The Florida Orchestra and make his debut with Calgary Opera conducting Aida.
Critical acclaim abounds for Maestro Mechavich. He has recently presided over highly recognized productions for Des Moines Metro Opera, Utah Opera, Tulsa Opera, Pine Mountain Music Festival, Oberlin Opera Theatre, Lake George Opera Festival, Virginia Opera, Fargo-Moorhead Opera and Spokane Opera. Others companies with which he has collaborated include Austin Lyric Opera, New Orleans Opera, Mobile Opera, Nevada Opera and Berkshire Opera.
On the concert stage, Joseph Mechavich has appeared with the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, Hartford Symphony, Waterbury Symphony, Virginia Symphony and the Sarasota Orchestra; and has shared the stage in gala performances with Denyce Graves and Angela Brown. He has collaborated on ballet productions with the Orlando Ballet, Nutmeg Ballet (CT), and Sarasota Ballet. A frequent recitalist, Mechavich has worked as a pianist in partnership with members of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Virginia Symphony and the Orlando Philharmonic.
Maestro Mechavich held the position of Principal Conductor for Opera Birmingham for six seasons (2004-10) conducting the company’s productions of Turandot, Madama Butterfly, La boheme, La traviata, Lucia di Lammermoor, L’elisir d’amore, Aida, La Cenerentola, and Il barbiere di Siviglia. He held the position of cover conductor for The Santa Fe Opera for four seasons, was Director of Music for Orlando Opera for two seasons, and was on the music staff for The Minnesota Opera for five seasons. A native of Long Lake, Minnesota, Joseph Mechavich studied at the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and the Yale University School of Music.