The Australian conductor, Antony Walker, studied composition, voice and conducting at the University of Sydney. While still a student, he was invited to conduct the Sydney Symphony and the Melbourne Symphony and was part of the Australian Opera Young Artists Program. He also founded the Contemporary Singers, who under his direction premiered many new Australian works. Soon after graduation, at the age of 22, he became Musical Director of Sydney Philharmonia Choirs where over the next five years he prepared and conducted many large-scale works including Felix Mendelssohnís Elijah, Mozartís Requiem, J.S. Bachís Mass in B Minor (BWV 232) and St Matthew Passion (BWV 244) and B. Brittenís War Requiem.
In 1997 Antony Walker went to Europe and was offered a position as House Conductor and Chorusmaster at the Welsh National Opera where he conducted, among others, Queen of Spades, Madame Butterfly, Carmen, Rigoletto and La traviata. He became a regular visitor to the USA and worked at Wolftrap Opera and with the opera companies in Minnesota and Cincinnati.
In 2001 with Alison Johnston he formed the professional chorus Cantillation and the chamber orchestras Sinfonia Australis and Orchestra of the Antipodes, all of which have since made numerous recordings for ABC Classics. His most recent recording project, George Frideric Handelís Messiah, was released on CD and DVD.
Last year (2003) Antony Walker was appointed Artistic Director and Conductor of Washington Concert Opera in Washington DC, and plans to divide his time between commitments in Washington, work in Australia and other guest assignments.
In 2003 Antony Walker will conduct the North American premiere of The Handmaidís Tale for Minnesota Opera, Rameauís Dardanus for Wolf Trap Opera, Béatrice et Bénédict and Stiffelio for Washington Concert Opera and The Fairy Queen for Pinchgut Opera. He has recently embarked on a project to record all of the L.v. Beethoven piano concertos with Gerard Willems and Sinfonia Australis on a Wayne Stuart piano; other forthcoming recordings include works by Bach and Ross Edwards, and a CD with Teddy Tahu Rhodes.