Gintaras Rinkevičius (born in 1960) is one of the most famous conductors in Lithuania today, a National Prize laureate, founder of the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra, and its artistic director and chief conductor. Today he is invited to direct in the Bolshoi Theatre of Moscow, to stage operas in the Latvian National Opera and Scottish Opera; in 1999 he was voted Latvian Conductor of the Year.
Rinkevičius, a winner of the Herbert von Karajan Fund International Competition for Conductors in West Berlin (1985), has directed the foremost orchestras of the world, such as the Berliner Symphoniker, Weimar Staatskapelle, Frankfurt (Oder) Symphoniker, Tampere Symphony, Copenhagen Tivoli Symphony, St Petersburg Philharmonic, Russian National, Russian State Symphony and Odense Symfoniorkester orchestras. He has conducted performances at the Kölner Philharmonie, Salzburg Großes Festspielhaus, Royal Albert Hall in London, Tampere Hall, the Champs Elysées Theatre in Paris, Palau della Musica in Barcelona, Saragossa Hall of Concerts, Grand Hall of the Moscow State P. Tchaikovsky Conservatoire, etc. Rinkevičius’ performances cover all of Europe, Taiwan and Hong Kong. He has conducted in international festivals (such as Nyon in Switzerland, Costa de Estoril in Portugal, Warsaw Autumn in Warsaw, Europamusicale in Munich, Chichester in Great Britain and Pontivy in France). His appearances with world-famous artists include the names of V. Urmana, S. Larin, M. Salminen B. Maisuradze, K. Ricciarelli, V. Tretyakov, Y. Bashmet, P. Donohoe, O. Kagan, G. Kremer, D. Geringas and R. Muraro. He has collaborated with the directors F. Zambello, M. Kimele, V. Kairiss, O. Koršunovas and D. Ibelhauptaitė.
In 1996–2003, Rinkevičius was the Latvian National Opera’s artistic director and chief conductor. In 2002–2005 he was invited to Malmö Opera as chief conductor. In 2006 he made a debut at the Scottish Opera (staged Carmen by Bizet). Since 2003 he has been conducting at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow (Romeo and Juliet by Prokofiev, The Queen of Spades by Tchaikovsky and La Bohème by Puccini).
Rinkevičius stages operas at the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre; in 1987 he supervised the production of The Seraglio by Mozart at the National Theatre of Hungary; in 1988 at the Klaipėda Musical Theatre, he staged the opera Mažvydas by Žigaitytė-Nekrošienė; in 1993, with the troupe of the Amsterdam Musical Theatre, he produced a ballet based on Mozart’s Requiem; in 1998 he made his debut with the opera Carmen by Bizet at the Gothenburg Opera; in 2003 he produced a concert performance of Drot og marsk by Peter Heiss in Copenhagen’s Tivoli Concert Hall.
Since the foundation of the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra in 1988, Rinkevičius has been its chief conductor and artistic director. Today the conductor’s artistic repertoire includes all the symphonies of Beethoven, Brahms, Mahler and Shostakovich, as well as more than 20 operas and ballets. He has directed lots of Lithuanian and world premières: the Symphony No 8 by Mahler, the oratorio The Beatitudes by Franck, and Itaipu by Philip Glass, as well as lots of pieces by Lithuanian composers, the oratorio A Letter to all the Congregation by Algirdas Martinaitis, Agnus Dei by Feliksas Bajoras, etc.
Rinkevičius graduated from the National M. K. Čiurlionis School of Arts, St Petersburg Conservatoire (1983) and the Moscow State P. Tchaikovsky Conservatoire (1986). He is the winner of the Fifth Confederate Conductors’ Competition in Moscow (1983), a laureate of the international competition In Memoriam Jįnos Ferencsik in Budapest (1986, a special prize for an interpretation of a piece from The Magic Flute by Mozart). Today he works at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre (he was appointed professor in 2004). In 1997 he was awarded the Fourth Class Order of Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas, and was presented with the Grand Latvian Music Award for merit to Latvian musical culture in 1997 and 2000. He is a Chevalier of the Order of Merit of the Kingdom of Norway (Den KGL Norske Fortjenstorden), and a holder of the Portuguese Ordem do Merito Comendador and the Latvian Order of Three Stars.
In February 2006 Guintaras Rinkevicius conducted several concerts with Novosibirsk Philharmonic Orchestra during the orchestra's tour to Europe (France, Switzerland).
In Septeber 2007 he accepted an offer from Novosibirsk Philharmonic Orchestra to become its Artistic Director and Principal Conductor. In this quality Guintaras Rinkevicius held a tour to France, Belgium and Switzerland in February 2008 (11 concerts).
In 2009 the orchestra toured to St.Petersbourg and Moscow, in summer 2010 – to Perm. In September 2010 the orchestra under the direction of Maestro Rinkevicius took part in the Festival “Stars on Baikal” (Irkutsk). In May 2012 the Orchestra under the direction of G. Rinkevicius participated in Shanghai Spring International Music Festival. In October 2012 the orchestra toured to Vilnius, Tartu, Johvi, St. Petersburg, and Moscow.
Under his direction the famous well-known soloists (E.Virsaladze, L.Isakadze, A.Kniazev, A.Palej and others) perform with Novosibirsk Philharmonic Orchestra as well as young musicians (S.Krylov, A.Korobejnikov, M. and A.Mogilevsky and others).
His repertoire with the orchestra includes symphonies by Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Shostakovich, poems by R.Straus, music from Wagner’s operas, never played before compositions of last time (for example, Queen Symphony by Kashif) and many other.
In September 2010 Gintaras Rinkevicius was awarded by the Order of Friendship (Russia).