Winner of the Salzburg First International Prize in 1982, Patrick Fournillier has been Artistic Director of the Academy Orchestra from 1984 to 1986. In July 1986 he experienced great success and enthusiastic approvals both by public and press in substituting Emmanuel Krivine in Verdi's Il Corsaro in Nimes. In 1987 he won the second prize, the prize for the Polish Music interpretation, the Orchestra Prize and the Public Prize at the third Katowice International Competition (Poland). Since then, he has been invited to conduct the Gdansk Orchestra, the Cracow Orchestra, the Philharmonic and the Opera in Varsaw, doing several recordings at the Polish Radio. Patrick Fournillier conducts regularly the Romande Swiss Orchestra, the Europe Chamber Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic, the Gran Teatro Liceo Orchestra in Barcelona Orchestra, the Radio-France New Philharmonic Orchestra, the Lyon National Orchestra, the Bordeaux-Aquitaine National Orchestra, the Lyon Opera, the Warsaw Philharmonic, the Opéra National de Paris Orchestra, the Prague Symphony Orchestra, the Teatro Comunale di Bologna Orchestra, the Teatro alla Scala Orchestra, the Welsh National Opera, the Opéra de Montecarlo Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Music Director at Massenet Festival, Patrick Fournillier led Amadis in Saint-Etienne in January 1988. Few months later, he recorded this opera (on the Forlane label) together with the National Theatre Chorus and the Paris Opera Orchestra, gaining the Orphée d'Or, the SACD Prize for the best recording of a French composer. During the first Massenet Festival, in 1990, he conducted Cleopatra and the oratorio La Vierge, followed by, in 1992, Esclarmonde and, in 1994, Grisélidis, Panurge and Le Cid and Gounod's Sapho. During 1988/9 season, Alain Lombard asked him to become First Guest Conductor at the Orchestre Nationale Bordeaux-Aquitaine For the bicentenary of French Revolution, Patrick Fournillier conducted Quatre-Vingt-Treize, written by Duhamel (Opéra de Lyon, 1989). The same year, he conducted Thérèse, for a new production at the National Theatre in Zagreb, and the gala concert for the re-opening of the Opéra Comique Salle Favart in Paris, with June Anderson, Rockwell Blake, and the Orchestra of the Opéra National de Paris. In December, at the Grand Théâtre de Genève, with the Romande Swiss Orchestra, he led the production Postillon de Longiumeau by Adam, broadcast by 25 television channels at the same time. From 1989 to 1992 he has been Permanent Director at the Picardy Sinfonietta in Amiens. Together with this orchestra, he was at the Opéra Comique de Paris in 1990 for the discovery of Auber's Manon Lescaut (live recording for Chant du Monde) and in 1991 he took part in the first world recording of the unpublished Cantata by Haydn Applausus (Opus 111). In Italy, in July 1991 he was invited by Riccardo Muti to conduct Auber's La Muette de Portici at Ravenna Festival and subsequently led Tosca at the Teatro la Fenice di Venezia. At 1992 Prague Spring Festival he experienced great success conducting the Prague Philharmonic Chorus and Symphony Orchestra in La Vierge.
In July 1993 he recorded several arias from French operas with the Montecarlo Philharmonic Orchestra, for EMI, gaining many important awards : Choc du Monde de la Musique, Diapason d'Or de l'Année, the Opéra Intemational Timbre de Platine, 10 de Répertoire and the Académie Charles Cros. The 1993/4 season saw him in Cardiff at Welsh National Opera (Massenet’s Cendrilion) and in Milan at La Scala (Massenet’s Histoire de Manon), where he returned in March 1995 for Berlioz’s Le Rouge et le Noir. Again in 1995 he debuted on the podium of BBC Symphony Orchestra. During 1995/6 season he has been Music Director at Saint-Etienne Opera Esplanade, where he led such new productions as Carmen, Dialogue des Carmélites, Un ballo in maschera, Il barbiere di Siviglia. He was also on the podium of the Martina Franca Festival (Cherubini’s Médée), the Orchestre National de Lyon, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma (La sonnambula), the Saint-Gallen Theatre (Don Quichotte), English Chamber Orchestra and of the Opéra de Montecarlo (Chérubin). In 1996/7 season he was the recipient of the Grand Prix du Disque for his recording (EMI) of French Operas Arias with Natalie Dessay and the Orchestre Philharmonic de Montecarlo. He conducted the new production of Faust at the Teatro alla Scala, La Bohème at the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Thais at Massenet Festival, Otello and Norma at the Saint-Etienne Opera, Chérubin in Montréal. In December 1997, during the France-Egypt Year, he was invited at the Cairo Opera for the production of Thais. He subsequently led such operas as La clemenza di Tito, Rigoletto, Samson et Dalila, Carmen, Aida, and many symphonic concerts in France, Germany, United States, Egypt and Italy. In Italy, he has been appointed at the head of the Arturo Toscanini Symphony Orchestra in Parma: there he has been the Artistic and Music Director, preparing the Verdi's Year Celebrations (2001). After the great triumph in the Teatro alla Scala for the new version of Undine by Henze, he travelled to Prague for La Damnation de Faust, to Sevilla to conduct Les Contes d’Hoffmann, to Valencia for Berlioz’s Requiem, was in Marseille for Les Pécheurs de Perles and in Ljubljana (works by Saint-Saens, Schumann, Roussel). It was during this season that Patrick Fournillier inaugurated the Great Theatre of Saint-Etienne with the Barbara Hendricks' recital and Hérodiade, one of great success of the Opera of Saint-Etienne. At the occasion of Verdi's celebrations 2001 in Italy, he commemorated the composer's disappearing with different manifestations. He gave a programme of Sacred Music of Verdi's Unpublished in World Premiere at Busseto, commemorating in the same time the death of Arturo Toscanini on the January 2001, and he led Rigoletto, La Traviata, II. trovatore at the Teatro Alighieri di Ravenna. In France it is especially in Saint-Etienne that he celebrated the great Italian composer, conducting there the two famous masterpieces Rigoletto and La Traviata. The season 2001/2 brings him to Oslo (Les dialogues des Carmélites), Macau and Hong-Kong (Gounod’s Messe de Sainte-Cécile), to Saint-Etienne for the Massenet's Festival in (Roma), to the Capitole of Toulouse (Massenet's Manon), to the Concertgebouw of Amsterdarn (Lakmè), to Genoa (Le siege de Corinthe), to Nice (Don Quichotte), Seattle (I Pagliacci, Cavalleria Rusticana), and also to Bratislava, London, Oslo for several symphonic concerts.
During the last seasons he was on the podium of the Teatro Regio di Torino (Don Quichotte), Opéra des Flandres (Werther), in Russia with the Slovenian Radio Television Orchestra (in Moscow, Kiev, St Petersburg…), Deutsche Oper in Berlin (Lucia di Lammermoor, Semiramide), in Budapest (concerts), Oslo (Les dialogues des Carmélites, Carmen), Warsaw (concerts) and Seattle (I pagliacci, Cavalleria rusticana).
At Flanders Opera he conducted highly acclaimed productions of Massenet's Werther, Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann and Dukas' Ariane et Barbe-Bleue.
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