Delyana Lazarova, conductor

Who or what inspired you to take up conducting and pursue a career in music?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been surrounded by music. My mother is a pianist and a composer. I started playing violin when I was 5. So my musical life began as a violinist and then conducting came as a natural continuation of it.

I pursued a career in music because I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

Who or what are the most significant influences on your musical life?

Definitely my teachers. I consider myself extremely lucky that I got to work with wonderful musicians through the years. I’m very grateful to my conducting professor, Johannes Schlaefli. He has been an incredible support, inspiration, and help to me.

What, for you, is the most challenging part of being a conductor? And the most fulfilling aspect?

The most challenging part is definitely all the travelling. I hope teleportation is discovered soon 🙂

The moments when I’m on the podium, making music, and diving into a piece, connecting with all the musicians – those are the most rewarding and fulfilling aspects of being a conductor for me.

As a conductor, how do you communicate your ideas about a work to the orchestra?

In a rehearsal, I am happy to talk about certain things in the music; it is needed, and it’s a good way to make sure that we are all on the same page with the orchestra. In a performance, it is the connection to the players through clear, but expressive gestures, and saying all I have to say to them with my eyes.

How exactly do you see your role? Inspiring the players/singers? Conveying the vision of the composer?

Yes, definitely inspiring; serving the composer; conveying the true meaning of the music, but also listening. Sometimes the orchestra has something to offer, and I would like to be sensitive to that. Every orchestra has its own character, its own sound, and I think for any young conductor listening and an understanding of that is a crucial aspect.

Is there one work which you would love to conduct?

There are many more than one…  But at the moment – Gustav Mahler, Symphony No. 6

Do you have a favourite concert venue to perform in?

I am yet to perform there, but I have to say, Bridgewater Hall [in Manchester, UK] is fantastic.

Who are your favourite musicians/composers?

They are many. And I adore them all for different reasons. But to name a few from the composers, those would be Johannes Brahms, Gustav Mahler, Benjamin Britten, and Claude Debussy. I grew up listening to David Oistrakh and Vladimir Horowitz.

As a musician, what is your definition of success?

Getting to do what you love for a living.

What do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?

That having a life in music is a great privilege and it comes with a certain responsibility – to inspire other people to discover all that music has to offer

What is your most treasured possession?

My violin

What is your present state of mind?

Quite excited for the future and really looking forward to being part of the Hallé Orchestra family!


Praised for her passionate performances and dynamic presence, Bulgarian-born conductor Delyana Lazarova is a young artist with a quickly growing international career. She is the 2020 First-prize winner of Siemens Hallé International Conductors Competition, the newly-appointed Assistant Conductor to Sir Mark Elder at the Hallé Orchestra, and Music Director of the Hallé Youth Orchestra in Manchester, England. Ms. Lazarova is also the winner of the NRTA International Conducting Competition in Tirana, in 2019. Delyana has received James Conlon Conducting Award at the Aspen Music Festival, and has won the Bruno Walter Conducting Scholarship at the Cabrillo Festival, California in 2017 and 2018. 

Ms. Lazarova has worked with orchestras in Europe and North America. Among them are London Classical Soloists in England, Südwestdeutsch Philharmonie Konstanz and Meiningen Staatstheater Orchestra in Germany,  the Janacek Philharmonia Ostrava and Hradec Philharmonic Orchestra in Czech Republic, St. Christofer Chamber Orchestra in Lithuania, Thessaloniki State Symphony Orchestra in Greece, Albanian Radio and Television Orchestra, Olten Philharmonic Orchestra in Turkey, Pazardjik Symphony Orchestra and Sofia Sinfonietta in Bulgaria, Estonian Festival Orchestra, Mahler Festival Orchestra, Colorado and Aspen Conducting Academy Orchestra in the States. 

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