This season’s concert programmes include masterworks by Mahler, Sibelius, Mozart, Ravel, Mendelssohn, Bruckner and Tchaikovsky. Mäkelä also conducts premieres by Sauli Zinovjev and Mette Henriette and recently written works by Anna Thorvaldsdottir and Kaija Saariaho.
In addition to his first season of concerts with the Oslo Philharmonic, the 2020/21 season sees Mäkelä make his first appearances with The Gewandhausorchester, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Concertgebouworkest, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and SWR Symphonieorchester. He returns to the Gothenburg Symphony, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic orchestras and Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, and conducts the Orchestre de Paris in 2 programmes as Music Director Designate. Mäkelä also continues his tenures with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Tapiola Sinfonietta, where he completes a Beethoven Cycle spanning three seasons.
Highlights from the 2019/20 season included appearances with the Cleveland, Frankfurt Radio, City of Birmingham Symphony orchestras, Hallé, Bamberger Symphoniker, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Münchner Philharmoniker, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester and Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France. Mäkelä made his operatic debut with the Finnish National Opera conducting The Magic Flute and a concertante performance of Erkki Melartin’s Aino.
Mäkelä studied conducting at the Sibelius Academy with Jorma Panula and cello with Marko Ylönen, Timo Hanhinen and Hannu Kiiski. As a soloist, he has performed with several Finnish orchestras and as a chamber musician with the musicians of Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France and at many Finnish festivals. He plays a Giovanni Grancino cello from 1698, kindly made available to him by the OP Art Foundation.
He assumes the role of Artistic Advisor for Orchestre de Paris from 2020/21 for two seasons, before becoming the orchestra’s next Music Director from September 2022. He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Artist in Association with Tapiola Sinfonietta, and Artistic Director of the Turku Music Festival.