Cristian Macelaru, Decorated Maestro, to Lead Cincinnati Symphony

The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, which has a history of attracting top conductors, including Fritz Reiner and Leopold Stokowski, announced on Wednesday that its next music director would be Cristian Macelaru, a Romanian-born maestro who has helped champion music education.

Macelaru, 44, will begin a four-year term as music director in Cincinnati in the 2025-26 season and become music director designate in September, the ensemble said. Macelaru, who holds prestigious posts in Europe, leading both the Orchestre National de France and the WDR Sinfonieorchester in Cologne, Germany, will succeed the veteran conductor Louis Langrée, the ensemble’s leader since 2013.

Macelaru said he felt a sense of possibility with the orchestra and the community.

“This was the one orchestra I really wanted to be with in America,” he said in a telephone interview from China, where he was leading a tour with the WDR Sinfonieorchester.

Macelaru has often spoken of making classical music accessible to a broader audience, and said he hoped to help expand music education efforts in Cincinnati.

“I’m very disappointed when I see so many orchestras and colleagues who feel that the music should speak for itself,” he said. “We have to tell people why this music is so beautiful and how they can discover even more beauty in it. I have done this all my life. And now I feel like I have a platform that is even more evident and more visible to be able to spread this message.”

Jonathan Martin, the Cincinnati Symphony’s president and chief executive, said in an interview that the orchestra’s leaders were impressed not only by Macelaru’s conducting talents but also by his desire to help expand the orchestra’s presence in the community.

Back to top button