Julia Jones


"Julia Jones’s attention to the emotional detail of Verdi's score achieved a searing intensity"

Rian Evans, The Guardian

"conductor Julia Jones successfully led the Staatskapelle in a truly pleasurable Mozartian experience, combining dramatic drive with beauty"

Joachim Lange, Freie Presse

"Julia Jones led a remarkable performance, notable for the sharp profile of the ensembles, the effectiveness of her tempo judgments and the lucid warmth of tone she drew from the orchestra"

George Hall, The Guardian

"Under Julia Jones’s baton the orchestral playing was immaculate"

Horst Koegler, Opera

"[Julia Jones’s] sheer skill in pacing and in sustaining long, energised lines of orchestral playing stepped up the momentum."

Hilary Finch, The Times

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General Music Director: Wuppertaler Bühnen und Sinfonieorchester

British conductor Julia Jones is renowned for the crispness of her interpretations, and the sensitivity of her conducting is echoed in countless reviews. The Guardian speaks of “searing intensity” and Deutschlandradio Kultur highlights the “great lightness and clarity” of her Mozart. She performs regularly at many of the major European opera houses as well as appearing with a wide range of orchestras on the concert podium.

In recent seasons she collaborated with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg, Tonkünstler-Orchester Austria, Dortmunder Philharmoniker and Bremer Philharmoniker. She conducted Falstaff at Oper Frankfurt, L’elisir d’amore at Opéra national du Rhin, Die Zauberflöte at Seattle Opera, Die Zauberflöte at Covent Garden and La traviata at Den Norske Opera. In 18/19, she appeared at the ROH with Carmen and at the Royal Swedish Opera with Aida. 2019/20 saw her house debut at Royal Danish Opera with Idomeneo.

Julia is General Music Director at the opera and symphony orchestra in Wuppertal. Since taking up the post in 2016, she has conducted productions of Carmen, Hänsel und Gretel, Luisa Miller, Le nozze di Figaro and La boheme at its opera house, with Il barbiere di Siviglia following this season. In concert, she has extended the orchestra's reach and repertoire, exploring new and unconventional venues alongside their appearances at Wuppertal's famous Historische Stadthalle. Thanks to her imaginative programming and active commissioning of new works, Wuppertal audiences have been treated to several world premieres alongside staples of the classical canon, and a wide range of soloists including cellist Alban Gerhardt, the Melton Tuba Quartet and percussionist Vivi Vassileva. Appearances with the orchestra outside Wuppertal include Milan, Lisbon, and Amsterdam.

Previous posts have included Chief Conductor at Theater Basel, Teatro Nacional de São Carlos in Lisbon, and Orquestra Sinfónica Portuguesa. She is a regular guest at Oper Frankfurt, Semperoper Dresden, and Volksoper Vienna.

Further guest appearances include the Staatsoper Berlin, the Wiener Staatsoper, the Hamburg Staatsoper, Welsh National Opera, Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux, as well as the Salzburg Festival. Also Staatskapelle Dresden, Philharmoniker Hamburg, Mozarteumsorchester Salzburg, Gürzenich-Orchester, Radiosinfonieorchester Wien, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra.

Photographer credit: Daniel Häker

This biography is for information only and should not be reproduced.


Royal Danish Opera (Feb 2020)

The scene, acting and music play together perfectly, because the three elements support each other instead of competing. This tightness also applies in sheer musical terms: the English conductor Julia Jones steers the Royal Orchestra with a safe hand right from the overture. Of musical wonders there are many in this three hour performance.

Peter Dürrfeld, Kristeligt Dagblad ****

La bohème

Oper Wuppertal (November 2019)

[The choir] mastered the rhythmical and, in their interplay between stage and pit not always easy, passages impeccably and with beauty of sound. General Music Director Julia Jones was at the helm of the Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal, which played mellifluously and with nuance; she showed a sure hand coordinating the difficult interplay between stage, the banda on one side of the dress circle and the pit in act 2, and throughout the entire evening she makes Puccini’s score breathe, glow and resound with her elegant conducting.

Sibylle Eichhorn, Das Opernmagazin

What would La boheme be without the right musical foundations in the orchestra pit? Julia Jones is a painter-with-notes and a storyteller of impressive intensity. Her direction of the Wuppertal Symphony Orchestra illuminates the intricate details of the score in glorious colours… This is sublime and at any given moment a musical delicacy of the highest class. Especially celebrated for her interpretations of Italian music, Julia Jones is working her way into the Champions League of the European music scene. You have to ask, is there really nothing that lets this premiere of La boheme in Wuppertal down? Where are the inconsistencies, the mistakes, or drops in quality. They don’t exist, plain and simple!

Ingo Luther, Klassik Begeistert

… Add to this finely balanced, nuanced sounds from the orchestra pit: The symphony orchestra under the thoughtful conducting of Julia Jones plays sensitively. She breathes with the singers as she accompanies them, and carefully chooses sympathetic dynamics. It is no surprise that the audience responds with standing ovations.

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

That Puccini’s hit opera La boheme does not dissolve into pure melodrama is due to the stylish musical performance as well as the smart scenic concept of this new production. Both General Music Director Julia Jones at the helm of Wuppertal Symphony Orchestra and the young, throughout excellent ensemble, as well as stage director Immo Karaman conceive the piece as what it is at its heart: an empathetic panorama of young people on the thorny way into adulthood.

Pedro Obiera, Westfälische Rundschau

Fantastic, too, is what the excellent symphony orchestra under Julia Jones is doing in the pit. Jones delicately traces many of the details [in the score]. In many of the passages which are usually overplayed with emotional exuberance, you can suddenly hear the sounds of metropolitan Paris - Puccini was much more modern in 1896 than is generally assumed. Many of the transitions are played with an immensely fine level of detail. When at the end of the second scene, for instance, the waltz segues into a march, but what we get here is different from the vast majority of performances: not a mere picturesque change of atmosphere, but an acoustic cue signalling the end of comfortableness. However, Julia Jones vividly portrays the great emotional outbursts, too. In short: both scenically and musically a great production; a must hear and see!

Stefan Schmöe, Wuppertaler Rundschau


Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (June 2019)

Julia Jones brings out the brilliance of the score vividly, ably abetted by the Orchestra, finding detail that often passes by unnoticed. All the dances have amazing rhythmic precision and drive and expert control of dynamics.

Alexander Campbell, Classical Source

Julia Jones conducts with terrific zest, equally attuned to the Offenbachian sparkle and dark intensity of Bizet’s greatest score

Graham Rogers, The Stage

Worth fighting a bull for.

Fiona Maddocks, The Observer

Le nozze di Figaro

Oper Wuppertal (April 2019)

Musically the evening leaves nothing to be desired. Julia Jones at the conductor's stand of the Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal delights with a trim sound. Rousingly, Jones opts for [fast] tempi... With great nuance she brings out the depths of the various characters’ emotional outbursts.

Thomas Molke, Online Musik Magazin

Julia Jones' understanding of Mozart complements the staging. The historically informed General Music Director with her enthrallingly expressive symphony orchestra pits substance against the superficial lustre of the catchy tunes.

Lars von der Gönna, Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung

Music worth hearing is coming from the orchestra pit, too. The Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal … shines with nuanced and well-balanced sounds. General Music Director Julia Jones ensures a firm grip, brings out the fine musical structures with meticulous clarity and carefully chooses tempi suitable for the singers. Thanks to this, Mozart’s score, which is full of layers for both orchestra and singers and which adds emotion to the tangle of intrigues, becomes clear and comprehensible.

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

The chorus and orchestra, too, are on top form. Under the sprightly conducting of Julia Jones, who takes her time in the beautiful quiet moments, the score is shaped all the way through with plenty of nuance and is guided by the clear sound of historically informed performance practice.

Stefan Schmöe, wuppertale rundschau

Julia Jones conducted a fiery but subtle performance.

Christoph Zimmerman, Opera Magazine

Haydn, Mendelssohn, Kraus and Schubert

Bremer Philharmoniker (February 2019)

The intoxicating result [of the young Mendelssohn’s work] is truly impressive, especially in this performance by the Bremer Philharmoniker. Thanks to precise execution and coherent phrasing, the orchestra, under the dedicated and very clear direction of Julia Jones, presents an interpretation rich in effects and with an impressive level of transparency, even given the seemingly impossible density of the over-fraught score. … In [their interpretation of] the second big work of the evening, Franz Schubert’s Symphony No. 3, the Bremer Philharmoniker exploit vivid contrasts. The playful elegance of the second movement was brought out with accentuated rhythms and dabs of colour in the intonation of the strings and wind instruments. In contrast, the ensuing Menuetto was earthy and assertive and its gallant middle section with triple-metre buoyancy felt like an invitation to dance. The Finale, a taut presto, was entertaining and full of fizz, with attentively chosen nuanced dynamics throughout, like a splendid final dance.

Gerd Klingeberg, Weserkurier

At first glance, Julia Jones seems to approach Mendelssohn‘s work from an unspectacular perspective. However, it quickly becomes obvious that this is somebody who subtly makes the Bremer Philharmoniker realise what’s on the sheet music. In this interpretation of Mendelssohn, she sensitively and intricately picks out the smallest nuances which removes the smoothness which can sometimes be an [unintended] feature in Mendelssohn’s music… On the surface, [Schubert’s Third Symphony] is music that seems quite harmless. It requires a conductor who is not only deeply familiar with the score but can also serve up the 18 year-old Schubert’s ingenuity within his ever-flowing inspired melodies and sophisticated harmonies with a fresh perspective. Julia Jones has a firm grasp on it: her cracking sforzati are worthy of their name and her crescendi move like tempests.

Michael Pitz-Grewenig, Klassik.com

Luisa Miller

Oper Wuppertal (December 2018)

Generalmusikdirektorin Julia Jones steers the Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal with firmly-held reins; she coaxes a large palette of slightly muted but nuanced colours from them and ensures a luscious sound.

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

Musically, this evening leaves nothing to be desired. At the forefront there is Julia Jones' taut conducting. Brimming with energy, she guides the Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal through a score rich with tension; she brings out the many nuances, which make Verdi such a great musical dramatist, with sophistication.

Thomas Molke, Online Musik Magazin

[Julia Jones] conducts the piece magnificently. The colours in the orchestra are finely attuned and the balance between the orchestra, the exquisitely singing choir and the soloists is consistently right. Rarely have so many of the innovatively composed details been heard in the complex Act 1 finale than now in Wuppertal. The tricky a cappella ensemble in Act 2 ran as if it were on rails. From beginning to end, everything is right.

Andreas Falentin, Die Deutsche Bühne


Royal Swedish Opera (October 2018)

Julia Jones conducted the Royal Swedish Orchestra in an emotionally charged reading.

Laura Servidei, Bachtrack


Oper Wuppertal (June/July 2018)

The true star of the evening, however, is Julia Jones, whose enchanting interpretation shows its charm especially in the quiet passages.

Stefan Schmöe, Wuppertaler Rundschau

Conductor [Julia Jones] goes for maximum transparency, flexible dynamics, sharp rhythmic articulation and nuance of sound.It's a feast of the "little notes" and of the infinite musical lines that lead unbroken from dialogue into melodrama and from there into the big arias and ensembles. This interpretation is polished and precise, light as a feather, colourful and full of life; stage and orchestra pit are in perfect balance throughout.

Ulrike Gondorf, Deutschlandfunk Kultur

General Music Director Julia Jones impresses with her sensitive and spirited conducting … the Wuppertaler Sinfoniker bring [the score] to life with plenty of nuance and brilliant colours.

Monika Willer, Westfalenpost

The Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal plays immaculately. Under the baton of GMD Julia Jones all the textures of the score come into play perfectly. Even the loud passages are nuanced and refined.

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

Hänsel und Gretel

Oper Wuppertal (December 2017)

Hänsel und Gretel was the operatic house debut of the new General Music Director, Julia Jones. She interprets Humperdinck’s wonderful score with keen attention to its impressionist colours. The orchestra sounds radiant and transparent throughout and so all the famous melodies (from “Brüderchen komm tanz mit mir” to Abendsegen) are well and truly sparkling.

Monika Willer, Westfalenpost

[Jones] unfailingly pays close mind to the action on stage and ensures the singers have the freedom to interpret their roles. The Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal plays with fresh and spirited sound.

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

General Music Director Julia Jones makes her operatic house debut in Wuppertal and it is apparent that she has rehearsed the excellent orchestra meticulously. The interpretation makes sense down to the [smallest] details. The orchestra has a light sound and [Jones] finds a very convincing balance between fairy-tale play and music drama. With well-planned climaxes and beguilingly beautiful sounds no part of the wonderful score remains unexploited.

Wuppertaler Rundschau

Already by the end of the overture it is evident to the audience what a catch Oper Wuppertal has made in Julia Jones. She brings out the colours of the prelude with such great passion and precision that the listener feels full of Christmas spirit and warm all over. 

Thomas Molke, Online Musik Magazin

Concert (W. Mozart, R. Schumann & C. Schumann)

Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal (November 2017)

Under Julia Jones‘ attentive and steady direction, the Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal played energetically. Mozart’s short symphony was given a distinct sound without frills. Schumann’s opus was also played with great nuance and balance of sound; [the orchestra] accompanied the Piano Duo sensitively. … The audience was large and enthusiastic with a standing ovation for Jones and the musicians.

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

Chamber Concert (Mozart, Rosetti, Elgar & Haydn)

Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal (November 2017)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's „Alte Lambacher“ symphony with its three movements was given a lively and crisp account... Under the precise and considerate direction of General Music Director Julia Jones, the symphony orchestra played the four movements of Antonio Rosetti's symphony "La Chasse" with just as much gusto and was clearly structured. Elgar's Elegy op. 58, too, was interpreted flawlessly with much nuance and style.

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

Concert (Mendelssohn: Lobgesang)

Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal (October 2017)

Throughout, [the musicians] could rely on Jones who breathed with them and steered them securely through the score with her attentive conducting. … The orchestra played with a fresh sound: The opening Sinfonia [of the Lobgesang] was crisp and gripping, buoyant in the Allegretto and reverent in the Adagio religioso. 

Hartmut Sassenhausen, Westdeutsche Zeitung

Die Zauberflöte

Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (September 2017)

As brisk as the swish of a panniered skirt, the conductor Julia Jones’s finely detailed reading of the overture sets a smart pace for this philosophical pantomime of opposites and pairs. While the strings are kept plain, the woodwind flourish under her direction: bassoons, clarinets, oboes and, of course, the flute.

Anna Picard, The Times **** ​

And in the pit, Julia Jones conducts a performance that stands out for its verve and clarity.

Hannah Nepil, Financial Times ****

British conductor Julia Jones returns to the pit where she maintains perfect dramatic momentum, and the whole evening goes with a swing.

George Hall, The Stage ****

The conductor Julia Jones maintained steady tempos and the orchestra were poised and controlled, never anything less than refined, but never pushing the boat out. The horns sounded terrific as did, fittingly, flautist Margaret Campbell.

Bernard Hughes, The Arts Desk

Julia Jones, who also conducted the 2013 revival, is strong in the pit, achieving lithe, thoughtfully paced and extremely well balanced playing from the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House.

Sam Smith, musicOMH ****

The whole thing was held together by purposeful conducting from Julia Jones who kept up the momentum and spirit of both the story and the music.

William Hartston, Daily Express ****

The Magic Flute

Seattle Opera (May 2017)

There’s a new conductor in the orchestra pit — the excellent Julia Jones, in her company debut — who gracefully supports the singers while crisply illuminating the score with all of its humor and pathos.

Melinda Bargreen, The Seattle Times

British conductor Julia Jones gave an impressive debut. ... Her lively tempi in the overture set the tone for a spirited rendering, and her gestures were magnanimous and graceful.

Erica Miner, Bachtrack

The 2011 production sparkles even more this time around thanks to ... the crisp conducting of Julia Jones.

Alice Kaderlan, Seattle Post-Intelligencer

British conductor Julia Jones makes her debut here before heading to the Royal Opera, Covent Garden, to conduct another Magic Flute. Under her sure hand the orchestra gave us clean, fresh, lively Mozart with nuance and support for the singers. 

Philippa Kiraly, City Arts

Don Giovanni

Nederlandse Reisopera (March 2017)

[Julia Jones] conducted the Orkest van het Oosten, brass sounding particularly heady, in a very assured performance with mainly brisk tempi to match the exuberance on stage.

Nicolas Nguyen, Bachtrack

The singers were more than deservingly assisted by the Orkest van het Oosten, which was directed by Julia Jones, a seasoned Don Giovanni conductor. She kept up the momentum in the orchestra ... and the interaction with the singers was excellent. 

Merlijn Kerkhof, Volkskrant ****

Under the baton of Julia Jones, Orkest van het Oosten plays exciting, tightly controlled Mozart.

Laura Rolin, Place de l’Opera

an overall excellent and attentive performance, including some magical moments

Mischa Spel, NRC ****​


Oper Frankfurt (September 2016)

Julia Jones and her orchestra deserve equal praise [as the production and Željko Lučić, who received much applause] ... Both in staging and musically ... this revival was as vibrant a performance as one should wish in opera.

Stefan Eckel, Bachtrack

Julia Jones conducted the Opern- und Museumsorchester. After several Mozart operas, this was the first time Frankfurt audiences got to see the English conductor with a Verdi interpretation. She earned tremendous applause from a well-entertained audience.

Matthias Gerhart, Frankfurter Neue Presse

L’elisir d’amore

Opera national du Rhin (October 2016)

Julia Jones left her [Danielle de Niese] and the other principals plenty of freedom between the numbers, but also brought a certain rigour to her crystalline conducting of the Orchestre Symphonique de Mulhouse, sometimes evoking Rossini (for instance in the trio with Belcore, Adina and Nemorino).

Rolf Fath, Opera Magazine

There is something irresistible about Julia Jones' direction: it carves out the subtleties of the belcanto opera dynamically in great detail. The former music director of Basel Opera allows Donizetti's buffo notes to show in the melancholic intracities of the opera's instrumentation, and the Orchestre Symphonique de Mulhouse follows her, playing musically, with nuance and credible Italianita. There is richness in colour, and not only on stage.

Alexander Dick, Badische Zeitung

Leading the Mulhouse Symphony Orchestra ... with subtle and eloquent woodwinds, Julia Jones ensures vivacity.

Michael Thomé, Res Musica

With the precision of a drill sergeant, Julia Jones (at the helm of the Orchestre symphonique de Mulhouse) brings the legacy of Rossini, e.g. the trio with Belcore, Adina and Nemorino, and the crystalline clarity of Donizetti's music to effect. She gives the protagonists sufficient freedom to turn their recitatives into beautiful cascades of words and music.

Rolf Fath, Opera Lounge

Concert (Handel, CPE Bach, Gluck, Haydn, Mozart)

Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg (February 2016)

In addition to those qualities praised by international critics, Julia Jones distinguishes herself furthermore by her enthusiasm and total mastery of the scores that she directs from memory - rarely heard symphonies by Haydn, CPE Bach and Mozart are revealed with both nuance and a sense of overall architecture and landscape in a style that is expressive without affectation.

Dernieres Nouvelles D'Alsace


Theater Freiburg (July 2015)

That stage and pit played together so well at the premiere of this three act opera is thanks to Julia Jones. The English conductor with an affinity for Baroque music is able to lead and support the singers confidently. With a Philharmonisches Orchester attuned to Baroque from head to toe - its string players using Baroque bows [and] its continuo section (with theorbo) showing off their competence – you hear transparent, expressive, never dominating Handelian sounds and find yourself saying: this is what it might have sounded like, back then, in London. This is what crispness and vitality sound like. ... Julia Jones knows how to do Handel.

Johannes Adam, Badische Zeitung

In the overture, the Philharmonische Orchester Freiburg under the masterful direction of Julia Jones, a declared Handel lover, dedicates itself as swiftly as fervently to a soft intonation. ... When [Orlando] then ... falls into a deep sleep in the larghetto aria, Julia Jones scales back the orchestra ... to near inaudibility – and makes you listen so much more. ... A great evening for opera lovers. Rapturous applause.

Siegbert Kopp, Südkurier

A baguette étincelante

Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg (January 2015)

In Mozart’s “Alte Lambacher – Sinfonie” in G major KV45a ..., Jones’ extraordinary aptitude for interpreting musical works in their full depth became apparent. The fine-grained and extremely energetic conducting technique, with which she motivated the instrumentalists, ensured musical pleasures in a class of their own. Thus [she] brought out the first movement’s truly refreshing character. The Andante [was] gorgeous. The perfect balancing of the sections of the orchestra was convincing beyond any doubt. The final movement was perfection and rounded off this Mozartian experience of sound. ...
[In Britten’s “Young Apollo”] piano and orchestra worked extremely well together tonally. This and the accentuated, crisp rhythms made the work really shine. The renowned conductor Julia Jones proved herself as masterful and elegant, and inspired all the instrumentalists to their best.

Mittelbadische Presse


Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal (February 2015)

The smooth sobriety and zestful grip of Julia Jones work extremely well for [Handel’s Water Music]. She conducts the piece from memory and it makes a striking and festive opening. There is a gorgeous solo from the oboe, triumphant alternating entries from horns and trumpets, and regal splendour. The symphonic poem “Tintagel” by English composer Arnold Bax is also in good hands with Julia Jones; Bax wrote an overflowing, heaving piece with a lush soundworld, soulful sonority, and a great hymnic ending complete with concluding cymbal crash. She appears to be completely in her element and gets the most of the excellent orchestra she has been entrusted with.

Dagmar Zschiesche, Der Westen

Aida, Macerata

50th Macerata Opera Festival (July 2014)

Julia Jones conducted an interpretation which was both intimate and solemn.

Il Resto del Carlino

The conductor Julia Jones wanted and knew how to deliver an original and more intimate interpretation, ridding the score of the usual triumphalist clangs in favour of a more dramatic and intense approach.

Maria Stafania Gelsomini, Cronache Maceratesi

[This Aida] was very much at the mercy of the score, notable (finally and for once!) for its more dramatic and subtle turning points, thanks largely to the skilful conducting of Julia Jones.

Filippo Davoli, Cronache Maceratesi

The conductor Julia Jones quickly established the intimate character of the music.

Gazetta del Sud


Volksoper Vienna (May 2014)

Musically, the production with the Volksoper Orchestra under the baton of Julia Jones, was an outright success.

Daniel Ender, Der Standard

Musically, it was overwhelmingly successful. Moreover, the orchestra was led ably and allowed to take risks under the baton of Julia Jones…the orchestra should be applauded for a commendable performance.

Chanda Vander Hart, bachtrack

For her crystal clear interpretation of the repeatedly rewritten version of the 1814 score, Julia Jones deserved the tumultuous applause.

Harald Steiner, Kleine Zeitung

Julia Jones chooses sensible tempos and creates dynamic contrasts which never interfere with the singers, still providing sufficient room to emphasize some of the more unusual details in the score without disturbing the homogeneity of the overall sound.

Walter Weidringer, Die Presse

The basis for such a successful musical premiere was Julia Jones, a spirited and gripping conductor. She succeeded in producing an impressive symphonic sound which provided a good accompaniment to the singers.

Johan Jahnas, Der Neue Merker

At the helm of the tonally pleasing orchestra conductor Julia Jones uses many emphases to create a well-defined musical accompaniment, building to a powerful finale. Overall a very good performance by the orchestra.


Even more satisfying was the sound that came from the orchestra pit. There, the British conductor Julia Jones conducted a dry and sometimes angular interpretation of Beethoven’s score, which nevertheless always put the singers first.

Salzburger Nachrichten

Bluebeard’s Castle

Opéra National de Bordeaux (February 2014)

In Bluebeard’s Castle, the quintessence of the drama is expressed by the orchestra: the British conductor Julia Jones conducts with a sense of orchestral colour that is almost impressionistic, reminding us of everything that links Bartok to Debussy; directing the Orchestre National Bordeaux-Aquitaine, she magnificently highlights their flexibility and clarity.

Christian Merlan, Le Figaro

On the podium, Julia Jones succeeds in distinguishing the different moods with great energy whilst highlighting the musical contrasts without the tension ever slackening… rich colours and a great sense of theatricality are everywhere. Barely recognizable since it moved into the its new auditorium, the Orchestre National Bordeaux-Aquitaine flourishes in the longer phrases, playing with an almost Straussian opulence, while exalting with clarity a glittering soundworld, eruptive and brilliantly impressionistic.

Patrick Szersnovicz, Diapason

The musical direction of Julia Jones is probably the highlight of the show. The musicians of the Bordeaux opera house have mastered the colours and the rhythms of the score with great ease. Julia Jones exploits the incredible timbres previously unheard from this opera which shimmers between the wonderful and the fantastic. It is wholly evocative and immensely powerful… The musical performance is of such quality that we (almost) accept witnessing Bluebeard kill Judith at the end and take the ring away… as if the intoxicating music from the pit allows us to forget all the many contradictions on the stage

Sabina Pena Arcia, classiquenews.com

Satisfaction at a well-appreciated performance was clearly demonstrated, with a unanimous ovation for the dark beauty of a piece that Julia Jones moulds with an iron baton.

Satisfaction for a performance which seemed to have been appreciated was clearly demonstrated, with a unanimous ovation for the

[Under Julia Jones] the precision and range of colour was remarkable, placing the Orchestre National de Bordeaux-Aquitaine definitively as a major ensemble in France.

Maxime Kaprielian, ResMusica

Sax & Symfonie

Nederlands Symfonieorkest (November 2014)

Briton Julia Jones presented not only polished performances, but also showed that she has great feeling for the (seemingly impossible to tackle) challenges with which Bernstein's music bristles.

Frits van der Waa, Volkskrant


Opéra National de Bordeaux (November 2013)

Julia Jones takes the orchestra to the top… the British conductor never lets the dramatic tension sag… The main strengths of this company - the orchestra together with the well-blended choir - distinguish themselves as an ensemble of a high-level under her baton.

Mehti Mahdavi, Diapason

The Orchestre National de Bordeaux demonstrates remarkable cohesion… the fiery sound bubbles and fizzes from start to finish, from the initial storm to the final kiss theme, the score is breathtakingly rendered by Julia Jones’s conducting.

Christophe Rizoud, Forum Opera

In the pit [Julia Jones] ensures a perfect harmony between singers and the Orchestre de l’Opéra National de Bordeaux.

Bruno Serrou, La Croix

In the pit, the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine is faultless under the urgent direction of Julia Jones: she gives the score a stunning dramatic force.

Noël Tinazzi, Rue du Theatre

British director Julia Jones offered a brilliant reading of the opera, lively and attentive to detail. She drew an excellent performance from the orchestra, who had their sound under control at all times. This was one of the best performances I remember from Julia Jones, who will return to Bordeaux in a few months with Bluebeard’s Castle.

José Mª. Irurzun, Seen and Heard International

In the pit, Julia Jones (whom the Primo Uomo logically comes to get for the final bows) repeats the miracle of her Madama Butterfly: brilliant orchestral sound, faultless ensemble and balance between voices and orchestra, highlighting the genius of the instrumentation of late Verdi and of course it all breathes and sings. The Orchestre National de Bordeaux gives her their best.

Maxime Kaprielian, ResMusica

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Musiktheater im Revier Gelsenkirchen (October 2015)

The Neue Philharmonie Westfalen played most outstandingly under English conductor Julia Jones, who interprets this music very coily, like chamber music: without shrowding it in a romantic veil, often very quietly, a meticulous, very transparent carpet of sound out of which individual sensations of sound flare up. This hits the opera’s language of sound, reminiscent of early English music in many places, perfectly. ... In conclusion: a really strong kick off to the season at the Musiktheater im Revier: Michael Schulz and Julia Jones masterfully hold this Midsummer Night’s Dream in the right balance between comedy and poetry.

Stefan Schmöe, Online Musik Magazin

A versatile set, an ensemble singing and acting on the highest level, and an orchestra that makes all the intricacies of the score beautifully tangible: these are the ingredients for an evening of opera that simply does your heart good - all around. The man of the house, Michael Schulz, his creative crew and guest conductor Julia Jones achieved this feat. Lightly and effortlessly they tell Shakespeare’s comedy, which Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears follow closely in their operatic adaption. ... Julia Jones and the Neue Philharmonie Westfalen are made for each other: they are in total harmony. The way the British guest conductor unfolds Britten’s multifaceted and allusive score, how she aligns stage and pit, is simply perfect.

Thomas Hilgemeier, Theater Pur

A fabulous story, great voices, the Neue Philharmonie Westfalen as a chamber orchestra under the direction of Julia Jones and a breathtaking set made for three hours of most diverting entertainment. ... British conductor Julia Jones gets the effects across without falling for cheap showmanship.

Anne Bolsmann, Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung

The Neue Philharmonie Westfalen under Julia Jones played marvellously.

Abenteuer Ruhrpott

The Musiktheater scored a coup with English conductor Julia Jones, who has worked with Michael Schulz in Dresden already. The frequently invoked sensitivity of her conducting proved itself true during the opening night in the most beautiful way. Jones performs with great attentiveness and spreads out Britten’s multi-coloured score in front of us like finely spun netting with countless spirited cross-connections. She seemed to connect most intimately with the Neue Philharmonie Westfalen; ... the orchestra delights with shimmering, magical sounds from the harps, celesta, vibraphone and glockenspiel, and with almost vitreous transparency. With noticeable pleasure they indulge in the contrast of nature world of the fairies with its murmuring sounds and the boorish sphere of the mechanicals. The musical quotations in the final act, grotesquely distorted on purpose, are frightfully fun to listen to.

Anke Demirsoy, Revierpassagen

It is a blessing that in Julia Jones there is an English conductor at the helm who brings a sensitivity for the delicate weave of this music. Under her direction, the Philharmoniker are at their best. The first soft glissandi in the strings foreshadow the defining atmosphere of the evening’s work: a web of phrases, ... transparent, otherworldly and ethereal. Sketched with laconic zest. Bewitchingly rich in subtle nuances. Outrageously precise in the art of characterisation. This stimulating music is the main event of a much celebrated jaunt into the unreal sphere of nature’s creatures.

Bernd Aulich, Recklinghauser Zeitung

With low glissandi in the strings and floating chords from harps, celesta and harpsichord, the fairies ... are given their very own timbre, just like the lovers, whose inner strife is reflected in dissonances. The British conductor Julia Jones knows to get the effects across without falling for cheap showmanship.

Anne Bolsmann, Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung

Die Zauberflöte

Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (April 2013)

[Julia Jones’s] sheer skill in pacing and in sustaining long, energised lines of orchestral playing stepped up the momentum.

Hilary Finch, The Times

Jones's speeds are swift and energetic. There are genuine frissons of alarm in the whirling strings that indicate Tamino's terror at the start, and later on, a real sense of victory in trumpets and drums when trials are faced and overcome.

Tim Ashley, The Guardian

In Julia Jones the Royal Opera has a real find of a Mozart conductor, a rare species. The opening chord of the Overture, solid, solemn, carefully weighted, led to a wonderfully detailed account not only of this slightly academic orchestral piece but of the whole sublime masterpiece too.

Michael Tanner, The Spectator

Often, [Julia Jones] would throw in a deliciously long rubato in the closing cadence of a phrase before picking up the pace at the start of the next. Overall, it was a very assured orchestral performance, bright, upbeat and perfectly balanced against the singers.

David Karlin, bachtrack.com

Julia Jones making a welcome return after her 2010 Così and following her highly successful WNO Traviata maintained a fine balance throughout the evening. The fact that she had a mainly large-voiced cast of singers allowed her to play up the big moments to their full value but there was no shortage of delicacy either. Jones gauged a fine balance between the ponderous epics of the Klemperer type Flutes and the over fleet versions which lose the sense that anything of import is involved. The orchestra responded with excellent playing throughout.

Sebastian Petit, Opera Britannia

Julia Jones then conducted a performance that could hardly be criticised musically. The ROH Orchestra was lively, sensitive and warm.

Hannah Sander, classicalsource.com

The Flying Dutchman

Den Norske Opera, Oslo (November 2015)

... the large and at times powerful orchestra was directed very musically by Julia Jones, with excellent tempi.

Henning Høholt, Kulturkompassett

Englishwoman Julia Jones was a good hand at directing the music.

Kjell Moe, Kultur Speilet

Idomeneo (new production)

Oper Frankfurt (March 2013)

The music is wonderfully performed by the orchestra under the Mozart expert Julia Jones who gives an interpretation of great lightness and clarity, helped by the virtuosic continuo playing of Felice Venanzoni on the fortepiano. Jones drives the action with mercurial tempi, perfectly balancing the dynamics with the singers on stage.

Natascha Pflaumbaum, Deutschlandradio Kultur

Julia Jones knows how to both conjure up joyous expression from the choir and tame the threatening forces of nature with the orchestra. The thrilling climax in the final bars was played with a wonderful intensity.

Bettina Boyens, Gießener Allgemeine

The conductor [Julia Jones] creates sharp contours of sound which carry the passion of Idomeneo’s tonal language.

– Volker Milch, Wiesbadener Tagblatt

Cosi fan Tutte

Volksoper Vienna (May 2015)

Just as successful as the staging is the musical side of things. Julia Jones, a renowned Mozart specialist, presents Mozart of the highest quality. Perfect tempi, colourful arches of sound. It is easy to tell she has many years of experience with this composer.

Sebastian Kranner, Der Neue Merker

A lively characterisation of everything, however, was undertaken by the conductor. Julia Jones always accompanied her singers thoughtfully and brought out feature points – courageous, but always spot-on.


Musically, the orchestra of the Volksoper can easily compete with the other orchestras in town. Conductor Julia Jones had it articulate vividly and transparently; she cleverly worked around the acoustic problems of the house by throwing prominent moments into sharp relief whilst flexibly and thoughtfully supporting the singers. ... everything coming from the pit sounded both solid and also inspired.

Daniel Eder, Der Standard

...brisk and fiery playing coming from the orchestra directed by Julia Jones.

Michael Wruss, Nachrichten.at

Brisk charm. Musically, things at the Volksoper are approached briskly and with dynamic verve, thanks to Julia Jones.

Wilhelm Sincovicz, Die Presse

Even during the arias, the strong understandability of the text of Kurt Honolka’s relatively modern translation was a focus point. This approach was carried by conductor Julia Jones, who put herself and the Volksoper orchestra fully at the service of the drama.

Mhh, Wiener Zeitung

Don Giovanni

Nederlandse Reisopera (March 2017)

The singers were more than deservingly assisted by the Orkest van het Oosten, which was directed by Julia Jones, a seasoned Don Giovanni conductor. She kept up the momentum in the orchestra ... and the interaction with the singers was excellent.”

Merlijn Kerkhof, Volkskrant ****

Under the baton of Julia Jones, Orkest van het Oosten plays exciting, tightly controlled Mozart.

Laura Rolin, Place de l’Opera

an overall excellent and attentive performance, including some magical moments

Mischa Spel, NRC ****

[Julia Jones] conducted the Orkest van het Oosten , brass sounding particularly heady, in a very assured performance with mainly brisk tempi to match the exuberance on stage.

Nicolas Nguyen, Bachtrack

La Traviata, Welsh National Opera

Millennium Theatre, Cardiff (February 2012)

Julia Jones’s attention to the emotional detail of Verdi's score achieved a searing intensity.

Rian Evans, The Guardian

The star turn of this Traviata was a woman, but not one of the singers. Her name was Julia Jones, an English conductor of wide experience internationally, but as yet relatively under-exposed in the United Kingdom. She should be known better: in a score often treated as a beat-through by professional orchestras, she elicited from the players of the Welsh National Opera an account of the music so full of insight and emotional resonance that it often eclipsed what was happening onstage above them.

Terry Blain, Opera Britannia

The orchestra produces a wonderful spatial effect—evidence of a clinical attention to textural differentiation from conductor Julia Jones, who thus triumphantly concluded her WNO debut.

Gavin Williams, Musical Criticism

Idomeneo (new production)

Semperoper Dresden (November 2012)

Musically this production was also impressive. The British conductor Julia Jones holds Idomeneo very close to her heart, and she endowed the music with a dramatic thread which can be difficult to achieve in this somewhat fragmented work. Under her direction the Sächsiche Staatskappelle Dresden played Mozart’s music in a tasteful and historically informed way, but at the same time without compromising their own distinctly rich sound or losing any of the music’s dramatic quality, an impressive accomplishment.

Matthew Lynch, bachtrack.com

Guest conductor Julia Jones successfully led the Staatskapelle in a truly pleasurable Mozartian experience, combining dramatic drive with beauty, always maintaining the tension in the recitatives and keeping the instrumental passages in their dramatic context and thus proving them to be indispensable.

Joachim Lange, Freie Presse

Così fan tutte, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden

London (February 2010)

Making her Covent Garden debut with this revival of Jonathan Miller's ¬production of Mozart's intricate ¬comedy is conductor Julia Jones, British-born, though as yet far better known in mainland Europe than here. She led a -remarkable ¬performance, notable for the sharp profile of the ¬ensembles, the ¬effectiveness of her tempo judgments and the lucid warmth of tone she drew from the orchestra. This production has witnessed some exceptional Mozartians in the pit over its 15 years, and Jones's interpretation ranks among the best.

George Hall, The Guardian

With Julia Jones conducting lively and trim Mozart in the modern style, and still finding time to get the inner lines in the ensembles to sing, this Così fan tutte makes as good an advertisement for the opera’s popularity today as any.

Richard Fairman, The Financial Times

Julia Jones sets tempi that are determined, at least in allegros, by the maximum speed at which rapid wind figuration can be still be cleanly, audibly articulated, exactly the sort of thing Karl Böhm used to do in Mozart, and which immediately predicates a fairly steady overture because the bassoon solos otherwise become a smudged blur, but as a result emerged immaculately here. Much else was similarly concerned with clarity of articulation, though it has to be said that whereas Böhm’s account of the score – which I heard at Covent Garden right at the end of his life – was suffused with a kind of golden, autumnal glow, Ms. Jones presents a far leaner, meaner sound (fortepiano recits, sharp and jagged) and, of course, a far fuller text.

Stephen Jay-Taylor, Opera Britannia

Tonally [Julia Jones] achieved much lightness and energy from her orchestra, which played well alongside the youthful onstage activities.

Alexandra Coghlan, musicalcriticism.com

Julia Jones directs the orchestra with fine attention to mood and detail, drawing taut playing in an auspicious Royal Opera debut.

Edward Bhesania, The Stage

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