Munich born conductor Sándor Károlyi grew up in a Swiss-Hungarian Family and received his musical education in Geneva, Florence and Vienna. He is a regular guest conductor at the Budapest MAV Symphony Orchestra and Alba Regia Symphony Orchestra in Hungary, Filarmonica Dinu Lipatti in Romania and Collegium Musicum Symphony Orchestra in Germany. He is also the assistant of Gábor Takács-Nagy at the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra, Manchester Camerata, and Orchestre de Dijon-Bourgogne in France. From 2014 until 2016, Károlyi held the position as Music Director of Akademisches Symphonie Orchester Wien, a youth orchestra active in the Viennese musical life. With this orchestra he had conducted Carmina Burana with over 250 performers on stage and on tour to Italy. As an opera conductor, he conducted Così Fan Tutte and Le Nozze di Figaro at Schönbrunn Palace Theatre, Vienna and in Schaffhausen, Switzerland. During these performances, he also played the recitatives. Furthermore, he assisted Ingo Metzmacher for performances of Wagner‘s Das Rheingold and Die Walküre at Geneva Opera. Károlyi acquired the art of the Viennese Operetta style while working as a répétiteur at the Vienna Operetta sessions in the Vienna Conservatory, and as assistant conductor of Schönbrunn
Orchestra Vienna with Guido Mancusi. These experiences led to opera conducting opportunities such as Heuberger's Der Opernball at TAG Theater Vienna and Die Fledermaus at Schlosstheater Schönbrunn.
Working with choirs has been a significant part of Károlyi's musical activity. He led many different amateur choirs and was also a singing member of the renowned Wiener Singverein, performing with many of the world's best orchestras and conductors at Musikverein. He assisted its Music Director Johannes Prinz in numerous projects, including tours to Russia and Japan with works by Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and Honegger as well as performances of Gustav Mahler’s Symphonies Nos 2 and 8 at the Salzburg Festivals in 2012 and 2013.
Károlyi is also keen on contemporary music. He has conducted the world première of Fanfare by Johannes Berauer with members of the Vienna Philharmonic at Musikverein. He performed works from Olzsewski and Batik and conducted a Big Band during a Jazz project at the Vienna Music University. In April 2017, he received a stipend from the Eötvös Foundation to attend a conducting workshop with Péter Eötvös in Budapest and Royaumont. On this occasion, he performed works by Kurtág and Boulez with the ensembles UMZE and Linea.
Károlyi studied piano, singing, trombone, cello and composition. In 2008, he started his conducting studies in Florence with Piero Bellugi. From 2009 to 2016 he studied conducting in Vienna, where he obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees with honours at both the Conservatory (Georg Mark) and the University for Music and Applied Arts (Johannes Wildner). On recommendation by Mariss Jansons, he also took lessons with Sophie Rachlin.
Among his upcoming projects, Károlyi will give his début at the Smetana Hall in Prague with the North Czech Philharmonic.
Works conducted in the Competition:
Beethoven: Egmont Overture, Op84 (excerpt)
Weber: Der Freischütz Overture (excerpt)