Long Yu awarded the Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur

Conductor Long Yu awarded France's highest honor of merit as the recipient of the fabled Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur.

France recognizes Maestro Long Yu's leadership in strengthening China's cultural connections with other nations around the world.

Maestro Long Yu received the Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur in a ceremony at the French Consulate General in Shanghai this week. As Chevalier, he joins the highest order of the Légion d'honneur, whose past recipients include Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, the Lumière brothers, Auguste Rodin, and Honoré de Balzac. The honor dates back to the early 19th century and is among the highest decorations of merit in France.

Maestro Long Yu is only the third Chinese National to receive the award. His notable collaborations with leading French orchestras include Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de Lyon and Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse.

This award marks a highlight of an impressive season for Maestro Long Yu. In July, star-studded concerts in Shanghai and Beijing coincided with his 50th birthday, and colleagues including Lang Lang, Alison Balsom and Maxim Vengerov performed, with new works composed by Tan Dun, Qigang Chen and John Williams. At the same time, he led the Shanghai Symphony into their incredible new home, a state-of-the-art venue built mostly underground, acoustically designed by Yasuhisa Toyota (famously, the man behind the sound of Walt Disney Hall). Only weeks later, he conducted the China Philharmonic as the first Chinese orchestra to perform at the BBC Proms. The New York Philharmonic welcomes Maestro Long Yu for subscription concerts in January 2015, and he returns in February with Yo-Yo Ma for his now-traditional Chinese New Year concert with them.

Long Yu is represented for general management worldwide by CAMI Music; please contact Anastasia Boudanoque (+1 212 841 9740, ab@camimusic.com). Further information available here.

Notes for Editors:

Maestro Long Yu is the Artistic Director, Chief Conductor and co-founder of the China Philharmonic Orchestra, and Music Director of the Shanghai and Guanzhou Symphony Orchestras. He is also Founding Artistic Director of the Beijing Music Festival.

He created China’s first orchestral academy, as a partnership between the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Conservatory and the New York Philharmonic.

Other China ‘firsts’ include bringing the first-ever performances of Wagner’s Ring cycle in the country, presenting its first-ever Mahler cycle, releasing the first album of Chinese music on a major recording label (Dragon Songs, alongside Lang Lang, for DG), and bringing the first-ever Chinese orchestra to play at the Vatican when the Shanghai Philharmonic played for Pope Benedict XIV. This year, he led the China Philharmonic as the first Chinese orchestra ever invited to play at the BBC Proms. The Shanghai Symphony under his baton was the first orchestra other than the New York Philharmonic to perform on Central Park's Great Lawn.

He has commissioned new works from many of today’s leading composers, among them Tan Dun, Krzystof Penderecki, Philip Glass, John Corigilano, Guo Wenjing and Ye Xiaogang.

Long Yu regularly conducts important orchestras and opera houses in the West such as the New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris, Chicago Symphony, BBC Symphony, Teatro La Fenice, Hamburg Staatsoper and Philadelphia Orchestra. He was previously honored to be appointed a Chavelier dans L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in France, and a L’onorificenza di commendatore from the Republic of Italy. He recently joined the Artistic Advisory Committee of the New York Philharmonic.