David Parry


"the musical performance under David Parry sweeps more or less everything before it"

Andrew Clements, The Guardian

"David Parry conducts with energy and elegance"

Robert Thicknesse, The Times

"David Parry conducted with exemplary sense of style"

Michael Kennedy, Sunday Telegraph

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David Parry is acknowledged as an inspirational champion of operatic, concert and symphonic repertoire across a vast range. He is known both for the re-appraisal of important lesser-known compositions and for a consistently fresh approach to established repertoire.

Significant credits include the world premiere of Jonathan Dove’s The Adventures of Pinocchio (in separate productions for Opera North and Staatstheater Stuttgart), Der Fliegender Holländer (for Portland Opera), Madama Butterfly (in Anthony Minghella’s production for ENO which earned him an Olivier Award), Così fan tutte and the premiere of Dove’s Flight (both for Glyndebourne Festival Opera) and Maria Stuarda (for Stockholm Royal Opera).

Much in demand from ensembles both in the UK and further afield, David Parry is regularly at the helm of orchestras including the London Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, Bournemouth Symphony, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic, City of Birmingham, Halle, Academy of St Martin in the Fields and English Chamber Orchestra.

He has an extensive discography for Chandos and Opera Rara. His recording of Rossini Ermione won a Gramophone Award for best opera 2011.

In recent seasons, David has conducted new productions of Tales of Hoffman in Wuppertal, Mose in Egitto at Oper Köln, Mansfield Park and Il barbiere di Siviglia at the Grange Festival and Theater Basel, Tosca for Nederlandse Reisopera and the world premiere of Jonathan Dove’s Marx in London at Theater Bonn.

Highlights in 2021 include La cenerentola for the Grange Festival, Hänsel und Gretel for Scottish Opera and La bohème for the Nederlandse Reisopera.

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

La cenerentola

The Grange Festival, July 2021

In the pit, David Parry's speeds took no prisoners and he skillfully managed the tricky task of co-ordinating stage and recording in the vivid ensembles in a natural manner, whilst almost making us forget that it was a recording. His accompaniment of the recitatives was always imaginative and kept the pace of the drama moving at just the right tempo. Parry also contributed the intelligently witty surtitles.

Robert Hugill, Planet Hugill (4.5 stars)

... with such a spirited Rossini conductor as David Parry in charge.

George Hall, The Stage (5 stars)

Happily, the festival has hit the operatic bull’s-eye with Stephen Barlow’s dazzling staging of Rossini’s greatest comedy, La Cenerentola (Cinderella), meticulously conducted with rhythmic flair and genuine Italianità by one of the UK’s most experienced Rossinians, David Parry. It’s a gem of a show, delivered by a true ensemble cast who, thanks to Barlow and Parry, work together like clockwork in Rossini’s masterly concerted numbers.

Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times

Hansel and Gretel

Scottish Opera, February 2021

The score is expertly played and lovingly conducted by David Parry who conveys the expressive potential of every note

George Hall, The Stage, 10 February 2021

Conductor David Parry excels in the pacing of the children’s growing panic in the woods and its easing into the lyric consolation of the Sandman’s song

David Nice, The Arts Desk, 12 February 2021

Clark’s arrangement makes the most of the score and conductor David Parry and the orchestra perform it superbly

Keith Bruce, VoxCarnyx, 10 February 2021

David Parry conducts with all the steadiness and security that you would expect from someone of his experience

Simon Thompson, Bachtrack, 10 February 2021

David Parry's pacing of a slimmed down version of Humperdinck’s score preserved its Romantic warmth and radiant contouring

Opera Magazine, April 2021

Il barbiere di Siviglia

Theater Basel (October 2019)

Musically, the standards of this production in Basel are high to very high. Conductor David Parry (previously seen in Basel with “Finta Giardiniera” and “Maria Stuarda”) always manages to combine the lightness, which is so important in Rossini’s [operas] with the necessary sense of rhythm. The Sinfonieorchester Basel masters his occasionally very fast tempi brilliantly.

Reinmar Wagner, Aargauer Zeitung

Conductor David Parry, who accompanies the recitatives himself from the fortepiano in an inspired way, chooses speedy tempi, which do not trouble the orchestra. The few quiet moments, too, the Briton realises with great sensitivity.

Georg Rudiger, Der Sonntag

Every detail of [the production] makes sense. It puts the staging on the same level as Rossini’s music: conductor David Parry and the Sinfonieorchester Basel, situated on the stage, reveal the music’s depth uncompromisingly – they sugarcoat nothing and yet play so beautifully. Just like the scenic realisation, the musical one shows how strikingly close this comedy is to tragedy. When music teacher Basilio spells out the devastating effects of slander (accompanied by video footage of refugees and asylum seekers), the strings wheeze in turn – wonderful! … In short: musically this evening is a gift from heaven.

Alexander Dick, Badische Zeitung

The audience at the premieres celebrate both productions. That is not least due to their compelling musical standards... the Sinfonieorchester Basel under David Parry ... handle the tempi-packed score splendidly.


David Parry is a very experienced conductor and, with the Sinfonieorchester Basel, offered a buoyant performance of this glorious music, which he has carved out to the finest detail.

Marco Stücklin, Opernmagazin

Wolf-Ferrari Il segreto di Susanna & Mascagni Zanetto

Scottish Opera, Lammermuir Festival (September 2019)

Conductor David Parry and the Orchestra of Scottish Opera brought the score to life with energy and enthusiasm.

Rowena Smith, The Guardian

David Parry conducted both scores as though they deserved the same conviction that others would bring to Verdi or Puccini. The orchestra responded to him beautifully, and the blend in the church acoustic was remarkably successful.

Simon Thompson, Seen and Heard International

The Scottish Opera Orchestra [played] with impulsive sweep under the heaving baton of David Parry.

Ken Walton, The Scotsman

The rich orchestration was given a vigorous performance by the large orchestra under conductor David Parry.

Keith Bruce, The Herald Scotland

David Parry conducts the orchestra of Scottish Opera with an appropriately fluid pace throughout.

Thom Dibdin, The Stage

Vaughan Williams: The Pilgrim’s Progress

Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester (March 2019)

From the moment the quiet brass hymn-tune emerged from the pit, it was clear that David Parry had a true understanding of the work. His conducting was by turns highly dramatic and sensitive, spacious where necessary but always moving forwards, and with clear cues that gave his young singers maximum confidence. Parry’s account was both luminous and purposeful, underlining the work’s dramatic intentions.

Nigel Simeone, Opera Magazine

David Parry’s Repertoire and Discography



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