Photo by Benny Vernon
Elias Brown is a curator of sound and space. He works as a conductor, composer, improviser, and educator to create thought-provoking and boundary-pushing musical programs in and out of the concert hall. From musical origins in Los Angeles as a jazz player, Elias took a multidisciplinary path with studies of piano, trumpet, dance, theatre, improvisation, and composition. Ultimately, a deep love for collaboration, spontaneity, and curation led him to conducting.
Elias is the current music director of the London Young Sinfonia and artistic director of 4|12 Collective. He has conducted Ensemble Musikfabrik, Ensemble Modern, Zafraan Ensemble, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Klaipeda Chamber Orchestra (Lithuania), Divertimento Ensemble, Yale Symphony Orchestra, St. Petersburg Chamber Philharmonic, Berkeley College Orchestra, and New Symphony Orchestra of Sofia, Bulgaria, as well as the London Philharmonic Orchestra Foyle Future Firsts, the Manson Ensemble, Royal Academy Orchestra, and Junior Royal Academy Orchestra.
As an assistant, he has prepared orchestras for Oliver Knussen, Marin Alsop, Robert Treviño, Sir Mark Elder, Edward Gardiner, Jac van Steen, and Andreas Stoehr. Also an accomplished trumpet player, Elias has performed as a soloist at Carnegie Hall, and principal trumpet at Chicago Symphony Hall, The Kennedy Center, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Royal Albert Hall, Mariinsky Theatre, and Moscow's Tchaikovsky Hall. He's had the pleasure of sharing the stage with such esteemed conductors and soloists as Valery Gergiev, David Robertson, Joshua Bell, and Robert Chen, as well as collaborating with renowned jazz musicians T.S. Monk, Bob Mintzer, Bobby Shew, Takuya Kuroda, and Wayne Bergeron.
His recent work has included CAVE, a site-specific installation-performance in the Brunel Museum based on Plato’s Allegory of the Cave; less than a grain of dust, a program of works spanning 800 years by Saariaho, Cage, Scriabin, and Hildegard, and others commissioned for the Yale University Art Gallery’s groundbreaking “Lumia” exhibition; music directing The Cunning Little Vixen, a fully staged production of Leos Janacek’s opera created in collaboration with the Yale School of Drama; and conducting the Yale Symphony Orchestra on their 2017 Russian Tour. Also committed to the transformative power of music education, Elias is a teaching artist with the LPO, regularly conducting side-by-side outreach programs with underserved communities across greater London.
He graduated cum laude from Yale University in 2017, and is now living and working in London having recently completed his masters with distinction at the Royal Academy of Music, where he studied conducting with Sian Edwards and performance design with Neil Heyde and Gerard McBurney. His masters dissertation, "Spacing, Placing, Making Kin: Towards a Musical Curatorship," drew extensively on literature from the field of curatorial studies to theorize and define pedagogical, discursive, and dialogical modes of concert curation.