Benjamin has performed live in over 100 concerts worldwide, leading orchestras such as the London Philharmonic, Philharmonia, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the Sydney Symphony at venues including the Hollywood Bowl, Sydney Opera House and Royal Festival Hall.
He has collaborated, recorded and performed his music with artists including Lang Lang, Herbie Hancock and Yuja Wang, and has over 50 concert music commissions to his name from organizations including London Philharmonic, Hallé Orchestra, Hamburg Symphony Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic and Manchester Camerata.
Associate Conductor of the English Chamber Orchestra from 2003-2007, Benjamin has conducted and recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra and City of London Sinfonia and has performed in venues such as the Barbican, Cadogan Hall, Royal Festival Hall and St. George’s Bristol in the UK. In 2005 he made his Australian debut conducting the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in a series of critically acclaimed live broadcast Gala performances at the Sydney Opera House, and in 2009 he made his debut conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl. Other recent guest conducting highlights have included the Bavarian Radio Philharmonic, Orchestre de Bretagne, Tivoli Symphony Orchestra, and an appearance in the 2007 Mecklenburg Festival with the Weimar Staatskapelle.
The Bloch Society Newsletter
“Benjamin Wallfisch steers the orchestra with finely honed lucidity; he prefers vigour over menace, galvanic climaxes radiating a cascading kaleidoscopic refraction.”
Recent seasons include concert debuts with the Los Angeles Chamber and London Philharmonic Orchestras, conducting the Hamburg Symphony (three times, including their annual New Year performances of Beethoven 9), Zagreb Philharmonic, Netherlands Symphony and RTÉ Concert Orchestras. He has also performed with the SWR Stuttgart Radio Symphony, Bournemouth Symphony, Slovakian Philharmonic and Helsingborg Symphony Orchestras and made a critically acclaimed disc of Bloch compositions with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and his father, Raphael.
Joanne Talbot, The Strad
“Benjamin is outstanding in Epiphanie, where the intricate, Debussyan instrumentation is exquisitely textured, and the orchestral partnership is subtle and nuanced.”
Benjamin has also conducted the orchestra of the Beethoven Academy Krakow as part of Poland’s prestigious Beethoven Easter Festival, and the Prague Philharmonia at the world acclaimed Dvorak Prague Festival. In the US he has worked with great success with the Monterey Symphony, North Carolina Symphony, Redlands Symphony and Long Beach Symphony Orchestras.
Benjamin has received over 50 commissions for the concert hall, ballet and theatre. He made his BBC Proms debut in 2006 conducting the world première of Escape Velocity; the fourth work composed under his tenure as Associate Composer of the Orchestra of St. John’s. He has also written for the BBC Singers, Bath International Festival of Music, Belcea Quartet, Goldberg Ensemble, Hallé Orchestra, Hamburg Symphony Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, and the Manchester Camerata, and his music has been performed at venues including the Barbican, Berlin Philharmonie, Sadler’s Wells, Bridgewater Hall, Cadogan Hall, Royal Opera House Linbury Theatre, and broadcast on BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio 4 and Classic FM.
Ahdda Shur, LA Examiner, November 12, 2012
"Wallfisch's violin concerto takes you on a journey that grips the heart and engages the mind. He knows how to write for the violin, making full use of a violinist's range and powers. The orchestra's part was beautifully constructed and full of fascinating details and colors. Wallfisch led the orchestra with unobtrusive control, keeping the orchestra beautifully balanced with his soloist. Though Wallfisch's violin composition could be placed in the post-romantic style in the tradition of Prokofiev, Stravinsky and other modern masters, the work transcends categories. This is simply a great violin concerto, and one that deserves to be heard in recordings and major concert venues around the world... a real triumph of a debut for the young composer, in this world premiere performance"
In 2003 he was commissioned by the Rambert Dance Company to compose an electroacoustic ballet score for award-winning choreographer Rafael Bonachela. Recent concert commissions include major orchestral works for the London Philharmonic Orchestra and a Violin Concerto commissioned by the LA Chamber Orchestra. He signed an exclusive publishing agreement with Edition Peters in August 2006.
Between 2003 and 2005 Benjamin was Assistant Conductor of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic. During this time he assisted Vladimir Ashkenazy, Valery Gergiev, Edo de Waart and Leonard Slatkin and frequently conducted the NRPO in venues including the Concertgebouw, De Doelen Rotterdam and the Muziekcentrum Vredenburg, Utrecht and in numerous studio recordings. He was Music Director of the Crested Butte Music Festival of Colorado between 2013-2016.
Die Welt, 4 March 2008
“At the podium stood the instinctive 28-year-old young British maestro Benjamin Wallfisch, who motivated the Symphony to colourfully-differentiated, precise and animated playing. The premiere of ‘The Torrent Leaves’ from the pen of the conductor was impressive both in its celestial reminiscences of Ligeti, and in its rhythmically joyful Stravinskian determination; Rimsky-Korsakov’s symphonic fairy tale ‘Scheherazade’ was marvelously performed.”
Benjamin was awarded the Master of Music degree with Distinction in composition from the Royal Academy of Music and is the first composer in the Academy’s history to be awarded it’s highest graduate accolade, the Honorary Diploma of the Academy. Benjamin was the recipient of every Academy composition prize including the Theodore Holland Intercollegiate Prize and the Performing Right Society Foundation Scholarship. He went on to study conducting in London with Sir Charles Mackerras and Vernon Handley and in Germany with Bruno Weil. He was awarded First Prize in the 2001 British Reserve Insurance Conducting Competition with a unanimous vote from both Jury and Orchestra.
Robert Matthew-Walker, International Record Review, September 2006
"Palmer gives [Shostakovich’s First Violin Concerto] a truly magnificent account, and is exceptionally well accompanied by the Philharmonia, playing at the top of its form, brilliantly conducted by Benjamin Wallfisch. Their tempos throughout are spot-on…Wallfisch begins the ‘Passacaglia’ at exactly the right tempo, and it is superbly sustained […] If I hear a greater record of Shostakovich’s music this year, I shall be astonished.”
Acclaimed by The Strad as “one of the finest accompanists anywhere on the podium”, Benjamin has performed concerti with some of the world’s finest soloists in including Evelyn Glennie, Pekka Kuusisto, Freddy Kempf, Dame Felicity Lott, Branford Marsalis, Igor Oistrakh, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and John Williams. Alongside a number of his own orchestral works, he has recorded Shostakovich’s First Violin Concerto with Ruth Palmer and the Philharmonia, a disc of bassoon concerti with Karen Geoghegan and the Orchestra of Opera North for Chandos, and concerto recordings with the London Symphony Orchestra and the English Chamber Orchestra.
The Sydney Sun-Herald, 7 August 2005
"The Sydney Symphony were in top notch form, conducted by an inspired Benjamin Wallfisch"
Upcoming concerts include conducting the Netherlands Philharmonic in a special complete performance of Ravel's masterpiece Daphnes and Chloe at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam.