MINNEAPOLIS — Danish conductor Thomas Søndergård was hired Thursday as music director of the Minnesota Orchestra and given a five-year contract that starts with the 2023-24 season.
Søndergård, 52, will have the title of "music director designate" during the 2022-23 season. He will succeed Finnish conductor Osmo Vänskä, the orchestra’s music director from 2003-04 through last season.
Søndergård also is music director of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, a role he has held since 2018-19 after serving as principal conductor from 2012.
In Minneapolis, he will head an orchestra whose past music directors include Eugene Ormandy, Dmitri Mitropoulos, Antal Dorati, Neville Marriner and Edo de Waart.
"My impression of the Minnesota Orchestra is that it is an ensemble with tremendous heart. There is a warmth, an openness and a cooperative spirit among the musicians that fits very well into the way that I like to make music," Søndergård said in a statement posted on the Minnesota Orchestra's website.
Søndergård was principal conductor of the Norwegian Radio Orchestra from 2009-12 and of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales from 2012-18. He first conducted the Minnesota Orchestra last December and returned in April.
READ MORE: 3 new State Fair Grandstand shows announced
READ MORE: 'I'm doing this for him': MN native dedicates 'America's Got Talent' audition to late brother
Watch more local news:
Watch the latest local news from the Twin Cities in our YouTube playlist: