We are thrilled to announce that popular conductor Dr. Nicholas Milton AM has accepted our invitation to conduct the Opera Australia Orchestra for the Finals of the 2018 IFAC Handa Australian Singing Competition.

Dr. Milton is currently General Music Director and Chief Conductor of the State Opera House (Saarländisches Staatstheater) in Saarbrücken, Germany, where he conducts approximately fifty performances each season. Current productions include Tannhäuser, Der fliegende Holländer, Salome, Peter Grimes, Katya Kabanova, La Bohème, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, La Fanciulla del West, Falstaff, Un ballo in maschera, La Traviata, Hänsel und Gretel, Carmen, Don Giovanni, Die Zauberflöte and Die Fledermaus. He has also frequently conducted at the Volksoper in Vienna and at the Komische Oper in Berlin, as well as in Dortmund, Leipzig, Innsbruck, and in Sydney for Opera Australia. In 2018 he will make his debut at the Deutsche Oper Berlin.

Concert engagements include appearances with leading orchestras in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, England, Hungary, France, Spain, the Netherlands and Asia, among them, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, NDR Sinfonieorchester Hamburg and Radiophilharmonie Hannover, SWR Radio Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart, Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken, Stuttgart Philharmonic, Dortmund Philharmonic, Staatsorchester Wiesbaden, Staatsorchester Darmstadt, Orchester des Nationaltheaters Mannheim, Staatskapelle Halle, Bremen Philharmonic, Philharmonisches Orchester Heidelberg, Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz, Philharmonisches Orchester Freiburg, Bruckner Orchester Linz, Tonkünstler-Orchester, Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, Sinfonia Varsovia, and Orchestre Philharmonique de Nice, Orchestre de Picardie, MAV Orchestra Budapest, Odense Symphony, Nagoya Philharmonic, China National Symphony Orchestra and the Taiwan Philharmonic. In 2013, he served as Assistant Conductor to Mariss Jansons on an extensive European and United States tour with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.

Appointed as the youngest-ever concertmaster of a major Australian orchestra, Nicholas Milton enjoyed a distinguished career as a violinist and chamber musician before dedicating himself exclusively to conducting.

Milton studied at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Michigan State University and at the Juilliard School. Milton holds four Master degrees, in Violin, Conducting, Music Theory and Philosophy, and a Doctorate in Music from the City University of New York. Mentored at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki by the legendary Jorma Panula, he won the 1999 Symphony Australia Conductor of the Year Competition and was a prize-winner in the Lovro von Mata?i? International Competition of Young Conductors. In 2001, Dr. Milton was awarded the Australian Centenary Medal for Service to Australian Society and the Advancement of Music. He also received the 2014-15 College of Music Distinguished Alumni Award from Michigan State University. In 2015, he was invited by the Australian Prime Minister to join the Australia-Germany Advisory Group. In 2016, he was named a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for Significant Service to the Arts as Musician, Conductor and Artistic Director.

Nicholas Milton’s discography includes about 50 CD recordings. He was nominated for a 2016 Grammy Award in the category, Best Classical Instrumental Solo, for his recording with Joseph Moog of Piano Concertos by Grieg and Moszkowski.