In addition to his permanent positions, Järvi is much in demand as a guest conductor, regularly appearing with the Berliner Philharmoniker, London’s Philharmonia Orchestra, Münchner Philharmoniker, Staatskapelle Dresden and the Orchestre de Paris, where he served as Music Director from 2010 to 2016.
Each season concludes with a week of performances and conducting master-classes at the Pärnu Music Festival in Estonia, which Paavo Järvi founded in 2011 together with his father, Neeme Järvi. The success of both the festival and its resident ensemble – the Estonian Festival Orchestra – has led to a string of high profile invitations including recent performances at the BBC Proms, Hamburg Elbphilharmonie and a tour of Japan.
With an extensive discography, Paavo Järvi’s recent releases include an album of little known orchestral music by Messiaen with the Tonhalle Orchester-Zürich; the third and final volume in the Brahms Symphony cycle with Die Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen; and the world première recording of Erkki-Sven Tüür’s 9th Symphony Mythos with the Estonian Festival Orchestra.
In 2019 Paavo Järvi was named Conductor of the Year by Germany’s Opus Klassik and received the 2019 Rheingau Music Prize for his artistic achievements with The Deutsche Kammerphilharmoie Bremen in the German orchestral and cultural landscape. Other prizes and honours include a Grammy Award for his recording of Sibelius’ Cantatas with the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Artist of the Year by both Gramophone (UK) and Diapason (France) in 2015, and Commandeur de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture for his contribution to music in France. As a dedicated supporter of Estonian culture, he was awarded the Order of the White Star by the President of Estonia in 2013 and in 2015 he was presented with the Sibelius Medal in recognition of his work in bringing the Finnish composer’s music to a wider public.
Born in Tallinn, Estonia, Paavo Järvi studied Percussion and Conducting at the Tallinn School of Music. In 1980, he moved to the USA where he continued his studies at the Curtis Institute of Music and at the Los Angeles Philharmonic Institute with Leonard Bernstein.