Artist Catalog

Tugan Sokhiev

Tugan Taymourazovitch Sokhiev (Ossetian: Сохиты Таймуразы фырт Тугъан / Soxity Tajmurazy fyrt Tuhan, Russian: Туга́н Таймура́зович Сохиев, born 1977, Vladikavkaz, Ossetia) is a Russian-Ossetian conductor.

Sokhiev began piano studies at age 7. He first conducted at age 17, inspired by Anatoly Briskin, the conductor of the North Ossetia State Philharmonic Orchestra. He subsequently attended the Saint Petersburg Conservatory, where he was one of the last students of Ilya Musin before the latter's death in 1999. Sokhiev's first opera as a conductor was in a production of La bohème in Iceland.

After seeing that production, General Director of Welsh National Opera (WNO) Anthony Freud named Sokhiev WNO's music director in December 2001, effective from 2003, for an initial contract of 5 years. His initial conducting work with WNO as music director was in revivals of Don Giovanni, Cavalleria Rusticana and I Pagliacci. His first new production as WNO music director was of Eugene Onegin. He was also in charge of the Russian Series for WNO which contained works by many famous Russian composers. In August 2004, Sokhiev resigned from WNO effective immediately, after problems with the cast of their new production of Verdi's La Traviata. Reports indicated a decline in morale among the WNO orchestra and chorus, and questions about whether Sokhiev was too young and inexperienced for the post.

In 2005, Sokhiev became principal guest conductor and musical adviser with the Orchestre national du Capitole de Toulouse. He received the accolade 'Révélation musicale de l'année' from the French Critics' Union in 2005, after a Paris performance with the Capitole de Toulouse orchestra. In September 2008, he became the orchestra's music director. In September 2010, he was named principal conductor and artistic director of the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin (DSO Berlin), effective in 2012, with an initial contract of 4 years. He took the title of principal conductor designate with immediate effect. In January 2014, the Bolshoi Theatre named Sokhiev its new music director, with an initial contract of 4 years, effective 1 February 2014. In October 2014, Sokhiev stated that he would stand down from the DSO Berlin after the 2015-2016 season, to devote greater attention to his Bolshoi post.