The Metropole Orkest has a track record of working with versatile chief conductors.
Beginning with its founder Dolf van der Linden, subsequent holders of this position are Rogier van Otterloo, Dick Bakker, Vince Mendoza and Jules Buckley.
In December 2023, Jules Buckley returned as chief conductor of the MO.
Composer, orchestrator and conductor Jules Buckley is musical pioneer who pushes the boundaries of contemporary genres. In 2004 he co-founded the Heritage Orchestra, a flexible chamber ensemble, dedicated to performing new music with a daring approach to crossing and linking musical genres.
Jules has led numerous successful projects as a guest conductor with the Metropole Orkest since 2007 and was appointed Chief Conductor in 2013. As conductor of the Metropole Orkest Jules has led projects with Snarky Puppy, Laura Mvula, Gregory Porter, Tori Amos, Markus Stockhausen, Michael Kiwanuka, Jonathan Jeremiah and UK house music duo Basement Jaxx. At the start of the 2020/2021 season Jules accepted a role as Honorary Conductor. In December 2023, he returned as chief conductor of the Metropole Orkest.
Six time Grammy winning conductor and arranger Vince Mendoza was the Chief Conductor of the Metropole Orkest between 2005 and 2013. The American conductor and world-class composer / arranger Vince Mendoza succeeded Dick Bakker and brought the orchestra international success. Under the direction of Vince Mendoza, the Metropole Orkest was twice awarded a Grammy (for collaborations with Ivan Lins and John Scofield) and received several Grammy nominations.
Vince Mendoza has also led successful Metropole Orkest projects with artists such as Herbie Hancock, The Garcia Lorca Project, Elvis Costello, The Music of Joe Zawinul and Chaka Khan. In 2013 Vince was appointed Honorary Conductor, and works with the orchestra over several weeks each season.
Permanent Guest Conductor
Japanese conductor Miho Hazama is a promising composer / arranger. The leading jazz magazine Downbeat named her one of the “25 for the Future” and as orchestra leader and composer of her own “m_unit” she received worldwide praise.
Miho was a participant of the Metropole Orkest International Arrangers Workshop in 2011 and was first at the helm in 2018. After two projects with the Metropole Orkest Big Band, she was asked last year to lead the orchestra at the North Sea Jazz Festival for the concert with Becca Stevens, Lizz Wright and Camila Meza. At the start of the 2020/2021 season Miho was appointed Permanent Guest Conducter, and works with the orchestra over several weeks each season.