Maxime Pascal

Artistic Director, Conductor

Maxime Pascal’s official website : click here

Maxime Pascal is a french conductor and the artistic director of Le Balcon.

After spending his youth in Carcassonne (south of France), he was admitted in 2005 to the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris taking classes in composition, musical analysis and orchestration. Very quickly he discovered he wanted to conduct, and signed up for the class of François-Xavier Roth.

In 2008, while still a student, he founded Le Balcon, a collective of artists named after Jean Genet’s play, along with composers Pedro Garcia-Velasquez, Juan-Pablo Carreño and Mathieu Costecalde, pianist Alphonse Cemin and sound engineer Florent Derex. The speciality of this multifaceted orchestra, playing all types of repertoire, is the complete integration of music with advanced technical sound systems. Maxime Pascal thus developed his personal vision of musical spectacle: that it should be a striking and radical experience for the spectators. This led him to work with personalities such as Pierre Boulez, Péter Eötvös, Michaël Levinas and Arthur Lavandier.

His great fascination with Stockhausen’s operas drove him to start with Le Balcon the complete production of the Licht cycle – seven operas for each day of the week– , starting with Donnerstag aus Licht (2018), Samstag aus Licht (2019) and Dienstag aus Licht (2020).

Soon after starting an international career, he became in 2014 the first Frenchman to win the Nestlé and Salzburg Festival Young Conductors Award.

Since then, Maxime Pascal has conducted many operas of our times : Sciarrino’s Ti vedo, ti sento, mi perdo (2017) and Francesconi’s Quartett (2010) at Teatro alla Scala, Levinas’s La Métamorphose (2010), Eldar’s Like Flesh (2022) at Opéra de Lille and Péter Eötvös’ Sleepless (2021) at Staatsoper Berlin and Grand théâtre de Genève. He also conducted operas from the repertoire : Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande at Staatsoper Berlin and Malmö Opera, Saint-Saëns’ Samson et Dalila and Berg’s Lulu at Tokyo Nikikai.

Maxime Pascal has recently conducted orchestras in France (Opéra de Paris, Orchestre de chambre de Paris, Orchestra national de Bordeaux, Orchestre national de Lille, Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse…), Europe (Hallé Orchestra, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra della Rai, Norrköping Orchestra…), Japan (Yomiuri Nippon Orchestra, Nagoya Philharmonic, Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra…) and South America (Orquesta Simón Bolívar de Venezuela, Orquesta Nacional de Colombia…).

Strongly attached to the practice and development of amateur orchestras, he has been since 2008 the musical director of the Impromptu, an amateur Parisian orchestra.