Here was something truly special: a conductor who revelled in freshly imagining each sound.

The Times
Official Biography

Klaus Mäkelä is Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. With Orchestre de Paris he assumed the role of Music Director in September 2021 and has been the orchestra’s Artistic Advisor since the start of the 2020/21 season.

He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony and Artistic Director of the Turku Music Festival. An exclusive Decca Classics Artist, Klaus Mäkelä has recorded the complete Sibelius Symphony cycle with the Oslo Philharmonic as his first project for the label, to be released in 2022.

Klaus Mäkelä launched the Oslo Philharmonic 2021/22 season in August with a special concert featuring Saariaho’s Asteroid 4179: Toutatis, Strauss Also sprach Zarathustra, two new works by Norwegian composer Mette Henriette and Sibelius Lemminkäinen. A similarly wide range of repertoire is presented throughout his second season in Oslo, including major choral works by Bach, Mozart and William Walton, Mahler Symphony No. 3 and Shostakovich Symphonies Nos. 10 and 14 with soloists Mika Kares and Asmik Grigorian. Recent and new works include compositions by Sally Beamish, Unsuk Chin, Jimmy Lopez, Andrew Norman and Kaija Saariaho. In Spring 2022 Klaus Mäkelä and the Oslo Philharmonic will perform the complete Sibelius Symphony cycle at the Wiener Konzerthaus and Hamburg Elbphilharmonie and give additional concerts at the Paris Philharmonie and London Barbican.

With Orchestre de Paris, Klaus Mäkelä performed at the summer festivals of Granada and Aix en Provence. For his first concert in the 2021/ 22 season he conducted a new work by Unsuk Chin entitled Spira, Richard Strauss Four Songs Op 27 with soloist Lise Davidsen and Mahler Symphony No. 1. His first season as Music Director also features the music of Ligeti and Dutilleux alongside Biber, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Rachmaninov and Stravinsky.

In the 2021/22 season Klaus Mäkelä appears as a Portrait Artist at the Wiener Konzerthaus conducting the Wiener Symphoniker and Oslo Philharmonic and playing cello in chamber music. He also guest conducts the Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Royal Concertgebouworkest, London Philharmonic, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and Münchner Philharmoniker.

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Upcoming Performances


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© Adria Goula


Oslo Philharmonic – Munch Museum

Jean-Féry Rebel: Le Chaos from Les elements
Sally Beamish: Distans
Unsuk Chin: Subito con forza
Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 6

Soloists: Janine Jansen (violin), Martin Fröst (clarinet)



Maggio Musicale Fiorentino

Max Bruch: Violin Concerto
Gustav Mahler: Symphony No. 5

Soloist: Daniel Lozakovich

©Arno de la Chapelle


Helsinki Philharmonic

Pierre Boulez: Initiale
Sauli Zinovjev: Wiegenlied
Gustav Mahler: Symphony No. 1, Titan


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This Autumn Klaus Mäkelä began his first season as Music Director of the Orchestre de Paris and his second season as Chief Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic. In Paris he started his tenure one year early, having had the chance to spend more time with the orchestra as a result of the pandemic. “Incredible, the path taken since his first {…}

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Invited as the Conductor in Residence of the 70th edition of the Granada Festival in Spain, Klaus Mäkelä leads three orchestras in diverse programmes. On 22 June Mäkelä led the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and pianist Javier Perianes in a programme of Sibelius and Grieg, followed a few days later with a concert featuring Jörg Widmann, Bartók {…}

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Acclaims & Features


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London Philharmonic Orchestra

"It’s not often you hear these three symphonic sketches (of La Mer) performed with such clarity and so much atmosphere. Light seemed to filter through every note, the playing was deft and precise, from cello choirs to horn chorales, sprays of glittering harps to dancing violins. Whether it was the sun strengthening from dawn to midday, or the turn from the horror to the majesty of {…}

Orchestre de Paris

"Klaus Mäkelä had only just launched the Orchestre de Paris in The Hebrides when one senses the big night ahead. In this maritime piece by Mendelssohn, which is more complex to perform than it seems, it is obvious: the sound of the orchestra, supple, full and natural, shows the bond of absolute confidence that the conductor and his musicians have succeeded in establishing {…}
Reviews  |  

Concertgebouworkest, Elbphilharmonie Hamburg

"Dmitri Shostakovich begins his Sixth Symphony from 1939 with a painful song of cellos, violas and woodwinds. And already here, in the first bars, one can experience everything that will define this remarkable concert. It is the warm and silky sound of the Concertgebouw Orchestra, the unconditional will to create together. And the energy and precision with which Klaus Mäkelä takes up {…}

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Follow On:
Dec 06
RT @OrchestreParis: Devenez chef.fe assistant.e de l’Orchestre de Paris @philharmonie ! Perfectionnez-vous auprès de @klausmakela et des ch…
Nov 29
RT @southbankcentre: ★★★★ "Klaus Mäkelä (@klausmakela) combines the vivaciousness of youth with a flawless precision to startling and exqui…
Nov 24
RT @LPOrchestra: We’re back from our tour in Germany, and looking forward to playing at the @southbankcentre’s Royal Festival Hall with con…