David Björkman, Conductor


David Björkman is one of the latest in a distinguished line of Nordic musicians to move from the concertmaster’s chair to the conductor’s podium. He was a prizewinner at the 2008 Prokofiev International Conducting Competition in St Petersburg and has been a recipient of the Swedish Conductors Award.

From 2016-20, he was chief conductor and artistic director of Livgardets Dragonmusikkår, the Royal Swedish Cavalry Band, in Stockholm. During his tenure, he made numerous recordings including new Swedish works for brass and concertos by Hallberg and Sivelöv.

In the 2022/23 Season David returns to the Royal Swedish Opera, Piteå Chamber Opera and Norrbotten NEO and conducts the Scandinavian première of Missy Mazzoli’s opera Breaking the Waves at the Vadstena Academy.

David enjoys ongoing relationships with all the major orchestral ensembles in Sweden, has led productions at the Royal Swedish Opera, the Gothenburg Opera, and the Malmö Opera and has conducted five world premières at the Vadstena Academy. David has worked as a guest conductor across the Nordic countries and in Russia and Slovenia.

David has presided over the first performance of over 50 orchestral scores and has introduced new works in the opera house and the ballet theatre, including works by Sven-David Sandström, Paula af Malmborg Ward, Marie Samuelsson and Moto Osada, including the international success Four Nights of Dream. His ongoing collaboration with American-Swedish composer Daniel Nelson has seen him conduct the world première of Nelson's first opera, Pride and Prejudice, his ballet The Little Prince and his orchestral work Urban-o-rama. David looks forward to conducting and records Nelson’s new opera Sova vaken at the Royal Swedish Opera.

David has recorded for the Naxos, Daphne, Orchid and Swedish Society labels with ensembles including the Odense Symphony Orchestra, Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, Malmö Opera Orchestra and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.

David was born in 1973 and studied violin at Gothenburg University. As a violinist in Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra and later as concertmaster in NorrlandsOperan, he collaborated with many front rank conductors. After deciding to take up conducting in 1999, David studied at the Royal Swedish Academy of Music with Jorma Panula and later took private lessons with Esa-Pekka Salonen and with Sixten Ehrling in New York.

He signed to Nordic Artists Management in 2013.

Distinctive and Atmospheric Art of Shaping
Nerikes Allehanda
Tue, 2008-01-01
The evening was concluded with W A Mozart´s delightful Symphony no. 40 in g minor KV 550. Here, beautiful dynamic contrasts were produced without playing for the gallery - The Swedish Chamber Orchestra expressed a pamphlet of Mozartian moods: there were both charm and intimacy. The music was lifted in a way of playing, so light, exquisite and yet so full of detail. There were a gracious aura around the timbre of both the strings and the winds; an aura revealed when what seems incompatible is made facing each other. It is in that effort Björkman´s distinctive and atmospheric art of shaping came to be so effective. With this Mozart interpretation Björkman proved that he is not going to settle with the Stockholm Folkoper 'Lustige Witwe', but is keen to peek into the Olympus of the classical titans of music, and this Thursday evening he showed that he is well equipped to interpret even their masterpieces. The audience became a spiritual experience richer.
Solid replacement, grandiose achievement!
Dagens Nyheter
Mon, 2006-04-24
"David Björkman, who won the Swedish Conducting Award 2004, got to prolong his engagement as short notice preparing conductor to finally take over the weekends concerts instead of indisposed conductor Mikko Franck. Björkman, it showed, was a solid replacer without being caught in a situation of cautiousness. He contributed with a polished accompaniment in Beethoven´s fourth Piano Concerto [with Hélène Grimaud as soloist]... There were also powerful playing after the interval when the orchestra show its muscles in Shostakovich´s 12th Symphony. ... A grandiose achievement from Björkman, rewarded with exultation from the audience and a flourish from the orchestra."
Press Service

Photo: Martin Hellström

Photo: Martin Hellström

Photo: Martin Hellström

Photo: Martin Hellström