Biography updated February 2024
Praised for the elegance and intensity of his interpretations, French conductor Pierre Vallet is a frequent guest with the world’s great opera companies.
He has conducted Madama Butterfly and Faust at the Metropolitan Opera; Tannhäuser, Carmen and Tales of Hoffmann at L’Opéra National de Paris; Carmen and Samson et Dalila at The Dallas Opera; Orfeo and Euridice (Glück) at Opera Theater St. Louis; Don Carlo at the Lithuanian National Opera Theater, Vilnius; La Juive at the Göteborg Opera, Sweden and Faust at the Gran Teatro del Liceu, Barcelona.
Elsewhere he has conducted Eugene Onegin, Tannhäuser, and Otello at Tokyo Opera Nomori; L'Enfant et les Sortilèges and Cendrillon (Isouard) at the Manhattan School of Music in New York; Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Hänsel and Gretel at the Saito Kinen Festival; Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle in Shanghai and Beijing; Madama Butterfly at Tokyo Bunka Kaikan; and Massenet’s Manon at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow.
This season he will conduct Roméo et Juliette at the Metropolitan Opera and a new production of the same opera at the Manhattan School of Music in New York.
The New York Times selected his conducting of Persée et Andromède by Ibert at the Manhattan School of Music as one of the ten best classical performances in New York in 2016.
Maestro Vallet's symphonic work includes regular appearances with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in London; the Camerata Royal in Bucharest; the Filarmonica Brasov in Romania, the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra; the National Philharmonic of Chisinau, Moldova; the Spoleto Festival USA and the Chattanooga Symphony Orchestra.
With the Royal Philharmonic and Elizabeth Sombart, he has recorded the Chopin piano concertos, 4 piano concertos by Mozart and the complete Beethoven piano concertos.
His recording of Beethoven Piano Concertos no.1 and 2 was nominated one of the ten best recordings released in celebration of Beethoven’s 250th anniversary by Classical Music Magazine.
For Albany Records, he recorded the opera Cendrillon by Nicolò Isouard that he helped restore to its original 1810 version.
Vallet has a long-standing association with the Metropolitan Opera, first as a pianist and coach and later joining the roster of staff conductors.
He enjoyed a twenty-year musical partnership with Seiji Ozawa, with whom he has worked closely on some forty operatic productions and oratorios throughout Japan, the US and Europe.
As chorus master, he has prepared the New York Choral Artists in Joan at the Stake by Honegger for the New York Philharmonic conducted by Alan Gilbert. He prepared the SKF Matsumoto Choir and the Ritsuyukai Choir for Britten’s War Requiem (Saito Kinen Festival Orchestra at Carnegie Hall), the Tokyo Opera Singers for La Damnation de Faust, and Beethoven's 9th Symphony conducted by Seiji Ozawa at the Saito Kinen Festival. He has also appeared as conductor and lecturer at the choral festival Tokyo Cantat.
As a pianist, he has performed in duo recitals in both the US and Europe with some of the world’s most renowned singers, including Natalie Dessay, Maria Guleghina, Ying Huang, Denyce Graves (at the White House), Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Roberto Alagna (at the Vienna State Opera), Nancy Fabiola Herrera (at the Teatro Solis in Montevideo) and Joyce di Donato in a live stream concert for the release of her album Stella Di Napoli.
A committed educator, Pierre Vallet is a sought-after lecturer and guest teacher at the world’s premier training institutions. In addition to his work with the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the Metropolitan Opera, he has been a regular visitor to the Aspen Music Festival, the San Francisco's Adler program, the Washington Young Artist program, the Steans Music Institute at the Ravinia Festival in Chicago, the Tanglewood Music Center, the Wolf Trap Opera Company, the Houston Grand Opera Studio and Opera Hong Kong.
He is member of the Vocal Arts faculty at the Juilliard School.
He is a graduate of L’Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris and the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris.