Conducting Masterclass with Prof. Mark Heron

April 07 – 14, 2024
Sofia, Bulgaria


Application deadline February 20, 2024*
We are excited to present Professor Mark Heron’s masterclass for professional conductors and advanced conducting students. A maximum of 12 active participants will have podium time of approximately 135 minutes each. Besides the sessions with full orchestra, there will be conducting sessions with ensemble on the first day.

The individual needs of each participant will be addressed in video analysis sessions, class meetings, and coachings in front of the orchestra. Conducting techniques, presence in front of the orchestra, understanding of the score, and rehearsal techniques will be explored in individual lessons as well as in group meetings.

Participants will have the opportunity to create their own publicity video recording during two recording sessions on the last day of the masterclass.

Masterclass Fees:

  • Application fee: €75 (non-refundable)
  • Course fee for active participants: €1750
  • Course fee for passive participants: €350
  • Deposit: €900 payable due  March 10, 2024
  • Balance: €850 payable due April 05, 2024, or in cash on the first day of the masterclass.

Please note that these fees DO NOT include travel and accommodation. However, we are happy to recommend an affordable hotel in Sofia with which we have had good experience in the past years.

*The selection of the active participants will be communicated via email within seven days after the application deadline.

The organizer reserves the right to postpone or cancel the masterclass in case of force majeure or other unforeseeable circumstances such as governments restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, travel bans, etc. The organizer will immediately notify participants of such changes and will refund the paid fee in full in case of event cancelation. Participants may not assert any compensation claims for travel, visa, accommodation costs, etc.

Prof. Mark Heron

Royal Northern College Of Music, Manchester

Mark Heron is a Scottish conductor known for dynamic and well-rehearsed performances across an unusually wide range of repertoire, and his expertise as an orchestral trainer.

As guest conductor he has appeared with the, BBC Philharmonic, BBC Concert, Philharmonia, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Manchester Camerata, Psappha, Meininger Hofkapelle, Orquesta Sinfónica de la Región de Murcia, Pori Sinfonietta, St Petersburg Festival Orchestra and many more. He is the Music Director of the Nottingham Philharmonic and Professor and Head of Conducting at the Royal Northern College of Music. At the RNCM he works regularly with all of the College’s orchestras and ensembles and runs the world-renowned conducting programmes. Mark is the conductor laureate of the Liverpool Mozart Orchestra and for ten years was Director of Orchestras at the University of Manchester.

Dedicated to working with young musicians, in addition to his role at the RNCM, Mark has conducted ensembles from the Royal Academy of Music, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa, Tilburg & Maastricht Conservatories, the National Youth Wind Orchestras of Great Britain, Wales and Israel, Slovenian National Youth Orchestra, and many more.

Mark has a keen interest in contemporary music and has given world premieres of many important works. He has collaborated with leading composers such as Kalevi Aho, Sir George Benjamin, Sir Harrison Birtwistle, Unsuk Chin, Tansy Davies, Detlev Glanert, Heiner Goebbels, Anders Hillborg, Giya Kancheli, Magnus Lindberg, Sir James McMillan, Colin Matthews, Christopher Rouse, Kaija Saariaho, and Mark Anthony Turnage. In 2018 he gave the the world premiere of Adam Gorb’s opera The Path to Heaven, and in 2006 the European premiere of American composer Daron Hagen’s opera, Bandanna. He has recorded dozens of CDs with the RNCM Wind Orchestra featuring contemporary wind repertoire on labels such as Chandos, Naxos, NMC, ASC and Polyphonic. Other recording projects have included CDs with the BBC Concert Orchestea and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and numerous radio broadcasts with BBC orchestras.

Mark studied at the RSAMD and the RNCM. Following a successful chamber music career and freelance work with many of the UK’s professional symphony orchestras, he undertook conducting studies at the RNCM and in master classes with Neeme & Paavo Järvi, Jorma Panula, and Sir Mark Elder. He worked with Sir Colin Davis and the London Symphony Orchestra on their mentoring programme for young conductors.

Alongside his conducting engagements, Mark is recognised as one of the world’s foremost conducting teachers, and students of his have achieved notable success internationally. As well as his work across all of the RNCM’s renowned conducting programmes, he developed an elite undergraduate conducting programme at the University of Manchester, is a visiting professor to the Royal Air Force and appears often as a guest at conducting courses and master classes all over the world.

Joseph Haydn
Symphony No. 100 in G major, Hoboken I/100
Johannes Brahms
Tragic Overture, Op.81
Symphony No.4, Op.98,
2nd and 4th movements
Carl Maria von Weber
Overture Der Freischütz, Op.77
Franz Schubert
Symphony No.5, D.485,
1st and 2nd movements
Jean Sibelius
Symphony No.2, Op.43,
1st and 2nd movements
Violin Concerto, Op.47,
1st movement
Allegra Academy reserves the right to make changes to the rehearsals schedule and the programme at their discretion and taking in consideration the requirements of the professor.

07.04.2024, Sunday
20:00h Meeting

08.04.2024, Monday
10:00-13:00h Ensemble
14:30-17:30h Ensemble

09.04.2024, Tuesday
10:00-12:30h Full Orchestra
14:00-16:30h Full Orchestra

10.04.2024, Wednesday
10:00-13:00h Ensemble
14:30-17:30h Ensemble

11.04.2024, Thursday
10:00-12:30h Full Orchestra
14:00-16:30h Full Orchestra

12.04.2024, Friday
10:00-12:30h Full Orchestra
14:00-16:30h Full Orchestra

13.04.2024, Saturday
10:00-12:30h Full Orchestra (video recording)
14:00-16:30h Full Orchestra (video recording)

14.04.2024, Sunday

Allegra Academy reserves the right to make changes to the rehearsals schedule and the programme at their discretion and taking in consideration the requirements of the professor.

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