European-based, Australian conductor Daniel Smith rapidly gained international acclaim after winning First Prize, the Golden Baton and the Orchestra’s Choice Prize, in UNESCO’s International Conducting Competition (in memory of Grzegorz Fitelberg), as well as Second Prize in the prestigious Sir Georg Solti International Conducting Competition. His third success was First Prize in the Mancinelli International Opera Conducting Competition along with the Orchestra’s Choice Prize in the Lutosławski International Conducting Competition. He then went on to become Direttore Principale Ospite of Teatro Carlo Felice in Italy (2017-2020).
Daniel’s musicality, energy and spirit create an infectious rapport with musicians and audiences alike. Following his highly successful debut as the first Australian to conduct The Mariinsky Orchestra, he has also conducted the Czech Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, Spain’s Orquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana at the Palau des les Arts Reina Sofía, Italy’s RAI National Symphony Orchestra, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Teatro San Carlo, Opera Australia, Norwegian National Opera, Warsaw National Philharmonic, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, New Japan Philharmonic, RTÉ National Symphony of Ireland, Indianapolis Symphony, Danish National Symphony, Royal Seville Symphony Orchestra and the Greek National Opera, among others.
Daniel has also conducted at festivals including World Expo, Stars of the White Nights, Mozarteum Festspiele, Järvi Summer Festival, Estate Musicale Chigiana Siena, Aspen Music Festival, Sydney Olympic Arts Festival, MiTo Festival and the Proms, Kraków.
Upcoming eagerly awaited performances include a new production of Don Giovanni, directed by John Fulljames with the Greek National Opera, a symphonic tour with digeridoo virtuoso William Barton and the Filarmonica Toscanini, and debuts with the Bilkent Symphony Orchestra, Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra and Wexford Festival Opera.
Daniel’s debuts at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, The Mariinsky Theatre and at the Sydney Opera House conducting Rossini’s Il viaggio a Reims (with director, Damiano Michieletto) affirmed his success as an opera conductor. In recent seasons, he has worked on operatic repertoire including La Traviata and Tosca (alongside late director Franco Zeffirelli); as well as Il barbiere di Siviglia, Cavalleria rusticana, Le nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni, Così fan tutte, Don Pasquale, L’elisir d’amore, La fanciulla del West, Der fliegende Holländer, Gianni Schicchi, La Rondine, Der Rosenkavalier, Suor Angelica, Turandot, Il viaggio a Reims, Wozzeck and An American in Paris.
Recently, Daniel launched his new charity foundation: “The Daniel Smith ‘Gift of Music’ Foundation”, personally purchasing and donating hundreds of tickets to those who could not normally attend due to financial constraint, terminal illness or disability.
Daniel studied conducting with Jorma Panula, Neeme Järvi, Gianluigi Gelmetti, Hugh Wolff, Peter Gülke, Imre Palló and Harry Spence Lyth. He holds a Master of Music degree from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Fellowships from the Trinity College London, American Academy of Conducting in Aspen and the Universität Mozarteum Salzburg.