Born in 1984, Robert Trevino’s star has risen rapidly among American conductors. The past three years have seen his appointments as Music Director of the Basque National Orchestra and Chief Conductor of the Malmo Symphony Orchestra. Most recently, he signed an exclusive, multi-year recording contract with the leading classical label, Ondine, to encompass both of Trevino’s orchestras and the full range of his artistic activities.
Trevino burst into the international spotlight at the Bolshoi Theater in December 2013, when he led a new production of Verdi’s Don Carlo, substituting for Vasily Sinaisky. The response was euphoric from both audience and the Russian press, which wrote, “There has not been an American success of this magnitude in Moscow since Van Cliburn.” He was subsequently nominated for a Golden Mask award for “Best Conductor in a New Production”. Appearances with some of the world’s top orchestras swiftly followed.
Even before his professional debut, Trevino had opted away from the traditional school system in favor of intensively teaching himself every score he could lay his hands on. He soon caught the eye of David Zinman, with whom he studied as an Aspen Conducting Fellow at the Aspen Music Festival And School – where he was awarded the James Conlon Prize for Excellence in Conducting. Immediately afterwards, in 2011, he was the Seiji Ozawa Conducting Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Festival. He was also invited to study with Michael Tilson Thomas at the New World Symphony, and to assist Leif Segerstam (in his acclaimed complete Sibelius Symphony cycle) at the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra. Trevino is also a laureate of the Evgeny Svetlanov International Conducting Competition in France.
He has served as Associate Conductor at the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (2011-2015) and, prior to that, as Associate Conductor to New York City Opera at Lincoln Center (2009-2011).
Recent seasons have seen Trevino crossing continents in an ever-growing number of major debuts – among them the London Symphony Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Tonhalle Zurich, San Francisco Symphony, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Detroit Symphony, Dresden Philharmonic, Sao Paulo Symphony, NHK Symphony, Toronto Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, Vienna Symphony, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Accademia Nazionale Di Santa Cecilia, Orchestre Nationale de France, Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Helsinki Philharmonic and recordings for Decca and CPO.
Immediate reinvitations have frequently followed his debuts and his performances are regularly broadcast, including a special profile feature on the Arte Channel. The 2019/20 season sees Robert Trevino lead European tours with the Basque National Orchestra, the Malmo Symphony Orchestra and the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra. Debuts include the Orchestre de Paris, the Royal Philharmonic, the Oregon Symphony and, in an emotional visit to his hometown, the Fort Worth Symphony. Return appearances include the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Sao Paulo Symphony, Vienna Symphony, Bamberg Symphony, SWR Symphony, RAI Torino. On the opera front, he follows the previous season’s Evgeny Onegin (“Trevino showed sensitivity and tremendous vigor” - Washington Post) in Washington DC, with a much-anticipated Carmen in Zurich.
Robert Trevino has commissioned, premiered and worked closely with many leading composers, among them Augusta Read Thomas, Sir Andre Previn, Jennifer Higdon, Philip Glass, Shulamit Ran and John Zorn.
Says Trevino of his love of making music, "From my earliest years, it was a compulsion, not a choice to sacrifice everything for music and to this day I have that compulsion. People ask me if I want to take a little break – no! I haven’t even scratched the surface of what it is that I hope to find in the music, and when I'm with an orchestra who are right there with me, who
don't want to let go of any minute of rehearsal time and love it - and when you have an audience who take that journey with you - well, that's when you know that a life in music is a pretty amazing life." When one encounters Robert Trevino, either in person or by watching him on the podium, one has no doubt what he means.