During this time, he conducted the Leningrad and Moscow Philharmonics, USSR State and Moscow Radio Orchestras and Philharmonic Orchestras of Kiev, Minsk and Riga on a regular basis, including foreign tours. In 1982 he made his debut with a Western operatic company, conducting Eugene Onegin at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and also made his British concert debut conducting three concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra. Since then, he has given numerous further concerts with the LSO in London and on tour, and has conducted a Tchaikovsky cycle with them at the Barbican Hall. In October 1986, he opened the season at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, conducting La traviata. There followed debuts with the Philharmonia with whom he also toured to Belgium, Hong Kong and Australia, the Royal Philharmonic (in London and Paris), and London Philharmonic.
Further debuts followed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Los Angeles Opera (Don Carlo with Domingo), San Francisco Opera (Khovanshchina), Florence Opera (with Salome) Genoa (Così fan tutte) and made concert tours of Greece, Spain, Mexico, France and England and conducted further Wagner performances (Tannhäuser, Tristan und Isolde and Parsifal) in Budapest. In the 1991/2 season he toured Europe with both the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie and, for the first time in their history, the Buenos Aires Philharmonic Orchestra. In 1992/3 he made his debut with the Orchestra of the Teatro Comunale in Bologna, Stuttgart Philharmonic, the NHK Symphony in Japan, Hamburg State Opera (Don Carlo), Dallas Opera (Eugene Onegin), Belgian National Orchestra, and the Orchestra of the Deutsche Oper, Berlin. He returned to Budapest to conduct Der Fliegende Holländer for the first time and made his debut at the Opera Bastille with Pique Dame. He also conducted the Verdi Requiem in a special memorial performance at Vaison la Romaine in France. In 1993/4, he conducted La Forza del Destino for the first time, in Marseille, recorded with the Royal Philharmonic and returned to seven western European countries for concerts before making his debut with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra.
He also conducted the Royal Liverpool, City of Birmingham Symphony and English Northern Philharmonia orchestras. In January 1994, he became Musical Director of the Belgian National Orchestra, Brussels, the former orchestra of the great Belgian conductor André Cluytens. At the end of August 1994 he conducted the Boston Symphony Orchestra at the Tanglewood Festival. The season 1994/5's reappearances included a month in Japan with the NHK Symphony Orchestra, Die Walküre in Budapest and concerts with the Hungarian State Orchestra, recordings with the Royal Philharmonic for Tring and concerts with the Bournemouth Symphony and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestras. 1995/6 included reappearances with the Philharmonia Orchestra, further Tring recordings with the Royal Philharmonic, the Hungarian State Orchestra, a new production of Siegfried in Budapest and masterclasses with young conductors at Miskolc in Hungary as well as the full complement of concerts with the Belgian National Orchestra. In 1996/7 he appeared in the UK in concerts with the Philharmonia Orchestra and made his debut at the Royal Albert Hall conducting the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in the first of their new concert season there, made his Canadian debut conducting the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and led the first tour of the UK by the Belgian National Orchestra. At the beginning of the 1997/8 season he conducted five concerts in Amsterdam, Toulouse and Paris with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic and toured his own orchestra to Austria, Switzerland and Germany.
He also returned to the Czech Republic after many years appearing at the Prague Autumn Festival with the Brno State Philharmonic, conducted a new production of Götterdämmerung in Budapest and returned to the NHK Tokyo. In 1998 Yuri Simonov was invited to become Musical Director of the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra; he took up the position at the beginning of the 1998/9 season. Since then he has worked with them extensively, not only in Russia but also on tours to the USA, the UK, Germany, Spain and the Far East. He also toured Japan with the NHK Orchestra in 2002. Mo. Simonov has also been the Music Director of the "Liszt - Wagner" Orchestra (Budapest) since 2001 and in 2003 began to give annual master classes for young conductors in Budapest. In addition, Mo Simonov’s fruitful contacts with other orchestras continue.
He has visited Israel several times to conduct the Israel Symphony Orchestra and the Israel Philharmonic, and has also frequently conducted the St Petersburg Philharmonic. In Budapest he has conducted Der Ring des Nibelungen in its entirety, Pique Dame, and, in 2004, Lohengrin. In 2003/4 he made his debuts with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande and the Warsaw National Phiharmonic, and toured Japan with the Moscow Philharmonic. In 2004/5 he made his debuts with the Beethovenhalle Orchestra (Bonn) and Budapest Festival Orchestra and led the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra on tours to the US, Japan and the Czech Republic. During 2005/6 he toured Spain, the UK and Korea and conducted a new production of Die Nurnbergen Meistersinger in the Hungarian Opera House, Budapest. In 2006/7 he led the Moscow Philharmonic on tours to Japan and Germany, and conducted a five-performance-cycle of Queen of Spades with Budapest Opera.
He also conducted the opening three concerts with the MPO at 35th Hong Kong Festival and led the 9th International Master Course for conductors in Budapest. Season 2007/8 included two tours of Russia and two of Japan with the MPO, his debut with the Het Brabant Orkest (Eindhoven) and the 10th International Master Course for conductors in Budapest. Season 2008/9 was marked by a jubilee – “Ten years together”, dedicated to ten years collaboration with MPO. Special for-concert-serial included the most famous musical pearls as well as world famous soloists. Also, there were Spain and Japan tours. For the season 2009 – 2010 some more Russian and foreign tours with MPO planned, as well as guest appearances to the orchestras of Riga, Wuppertal and Eindhoven. He has recorded with the Bolshoi company for Melodia, for Collins Classics with the London Symphony Orchestra, the London Philharmonic and the Philharmonia, the Royal Philharmonic for Tring and with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra for EMI. Mo. Simonov has received many awards for his outstanding contribution to music including: Honored Artist of the Russian Federation (1971), People's Artist of the Russian Federation (1976), Lenin's Komsomol Prize (1977), People's Artist of the USSR (1981), Professor of the Moscow Conservatoire (1985), Order for Merits in Culture for the Polish Republic (1988), Russian Order of Honour, (2001), Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary: Officer’s Cross (2001), Order of the Star: Commander (Romania, 2003).
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