Mikko Franck

Mikko Franck (born 1 April 1979) is a Finnish conductor and violinist.

Franck was born in Helsinki, and began to play the violin at the age of 5. He continued violin studies at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, beginning in 1992. In 1995, Franck took an opportunity from the Junior Department at the Sibelius Academy, which was celebrating its anniversary, to conduct an orchestra offered to any student who wished to do so. After this occurred, Jorma Panula immediately enlisted him as a private student. Franck entered Panula's conducting class at the Sibelius Academy in the fall of 1996. He has said of Panula:

"He gave me everything that can be taught about this profession. For instance, we used video as an aid in losing my unnecessary mannerisms."

Franck ended his studies there in 1998 without receiving a diploma because his international career had already begun.[1]

Before age 23, Franck had made his conducting début with all of the leading Scandinavian orchestras, as well as with the Philharmonia Orchestra of London, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Munich Philharmonic, the Berlin Staatsoper (Berlin State Opera) and the Israel Philharmonic. He received a Grammy nomination for "Best Orchestral Performance" for his first recording, which was of music by Jean Sibelius. He is a particular champion of the works of Einojuhani Rautavaara.

Franck became artistic director of the National Orchestra of Belgium in September 2002, and held the post until 2007. In 2004, Franck was named general music director of the Finnish National Opera and officially took up the post in August 2006. In February 2007, he suddenly announced his resignation from this position, claiming a loss of confidence in the company's then-general director Erkki Korhonen and administrative director Pekka Kauranen.[2] However, in November 2007, the company nominated Franck to the dual post of Artistic Director and General Music Director,[3] and in December 2007, officially named him to both posts.[4] Franck concluded his tenure in both posts as of 31 July 2013.[5] Franck began his tenure as the music director of the Orchestre philharmonique de Radio France in September 2015.

Franck married the German opera director Martina Pickert in 2006. The couple divorced in 2010.

Selected Discography


  1. Hako, P., Keskusteluja ja kirjoituksia (Discussions and writings; "Rautavaara & Franck"). WSOY 2006. ISBN 978-951-0-31058-8
  2. Vivien Schweitzer (15 February 2007). "With Harsh Words, Conductor Mikko Franck Resigns From Finnish National Opera". Playbill Arts. Retrieved 2007-12-19.
  3. "Mikko Franck nominated for post of Artistic Director and General Music Director" (Press release). Finnish National Opera. 21 November 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-19.
  4. "Mikko Franck appointed Artistic Director of the Finnish National Opera" (Press release). Finnish National Opera. 18 November 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-19.
  5. "Eight premieres at the Finnish National Opera in the 2013–2014 season" (Press release). Finnish National Opera. 8 May 2013. Retrieved 2013-11-08.

External links

Preceded by
Yuri Simonov
Music Director, Belgian National Orchestra
Succeeded by
Walter Weller
Preceded by
Muhai Tang
Music Director, Finnish National Opera
Succeeded by
Michael Güttler (principal conductor)
Preceded by
Myung-whun Chung
Music Director, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
Succeeded by
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