Felix Mildenberger (28, Germany) is the winner of the 15th Donatella Flick Conducting Competition, taking up the position of Assistant Conductor at the London Symphony Orchestra for one year and receiving a £15,000 cash prize from Donatella Flick. As LSO Assistant Conductor he will have the chance to assist conductors including LSO Music Director Sir Simon Rattle, and LSO Principal Guest Conductors François-Xavier Roth and Gianandrea Noseda.
Mildenberger was one of three finalists who conducted the London Symphony Orchestra at the Competition’s final on 22 November 2018 at London’s Barbican Centre in front of HRH The Duke of Kent, Donatella Flick and a public audience. The runners up were Harry Ogg, aged 27 from the UK and Alexander Colding Smith, 29 from Denmark.
The final round of the competition was judged by a panel comprising conductors Sian Edwards, Tadaaki Otaka, François-Xavier Roth and Yan Pascal Tortelier, the violinist Vadim Repin, Gareth Davies (LSO Principal Flute), Christine Pendrill, (LSO Principal Cor Anglais), and Lennox Mackenzie former LSO Sub-Leader.
The concert opened with three performances of the Prelude to Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, each conducted by a different finalist, followed by the three movements of Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No 2 with soloist Vadim Repin, also serving on the judging panel, and Kodály’s Dances of Galánta.
Donatella Flick’s background as an Olympic sportswoman, combined with a lifelong passion for music, gave her an understanding of the pressures of a professional performer’s career and the lack of opportunities for young conductors to develop their talent.
Her answer was to found the Donatella Conducting Competition in 1990, with support from HRH The Prince of Wales. Since 1996, the Competition has run biennially in partnership with the London Symphony Orchestra, with the next in December 2016.
The Donatella Flick Conducting Competition
Founded in 1990 by Donatella Flick, the Donatella Flick Conducting Competition exists to help talented young conductors to bridge the gap between conservatoire training and life as a professional conductor.
The DFCC occurs biennially with the next Competition taking place in November 2020. The Competition has operated in partnership with the London Symphony Orchestra since 1996.