BIOGRAPHY

Franco-American conductor Elizabeth Askren is valued for her “masterful work inspiring amazing results, filled with verve, panache, and truth” (appoggiature).

At home in both the symphonic and operatic repertoire, Elizabeth Askren has worked as Assistant Music Director, Assistant and Cover Conductor for productions in leading European venues (Théâtre du Châtelet, Théâtre des Champs Elysées, The Concertgebouw…) and has guest conducted orchestras such as the London Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

Since 2017, Askren is the Artistic Director of TOA – Transylvanian Opera Academy, Romania’s first young artists program in opera.  Recent and upcoming débuts include performances with the Orchestra of the Opéra de Toulon, the Romanian National Opera and the State Hungarian Opera of Cluj-Napoca, and the Dallas Opera Orchestra as a HIWC fellow.

She is the subject of several radio and press interviews (France Musique, France Inter, France Culture, Radio France Internationale…), and is featured in Michael Wende’s acclaimed documentary Der Taktstock (2010) on the art of conducting. Selected by the national French Téva télévision as a finalist for their “Woman of the Year 2013” title, and was most recently spotlighted on PBS Newshour, “Bringing Women Conductors to the Front of the Orchestra”.

Laureate of France’s ADAMI “Talents chefs d’orchestre” prize, the Salzburg Mozarteum, the Royaumont Foundation, and the Harriet Hale Woolley Scholarship, Elizabeth Askren was granted a conducting fellowship by England’s Aldeburgh Festival. A finalist candidate for the Gustav Mahler International Conducting Competition in Bamberg, Germany, she was invited by Lorin Maazel as “Apprentice Conductor” for the inaugural season of the Castleton festival in Virginia.  She is a Young Leader of the French American Foundation, a select group of carefully chosen up-and-coming leaders in government, business, media, military, culture and the non-profit sector.

Elizabeth Askren holds diplomas in piano and conducting from the Juilliard School, Oberlin Conservatory, and the Conducting Institute of Bard in the United States, and the Schola Cantorum and the Ecole Normale de Musique in France. She has participated in several international festivals and master classes in North America (Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra Conducting Institute, Cabrillo Festival, Tanglewood BUTI) and Europe (Vienna Hochschüle für Musik, Salzburg Mozarteum Sommerakademie…), and counts among her musical mentors Marin Alsop, Kenneth Kiesler, and Byron Janis.