Joana Carneiro

Last updated: April 12, 2024

Acclaimed Portuguese conductor Joana Carneiro is the Principal Guest Conductor of the Real Filharmonía de Galicia and Artistic Director of the Gulbenkian Youth Orchestra, a post she has held since 2013. Previously, she was Principal Conductor of the Orquestra Sinfónica Portuguesa at Teatro São Carlos in Lisbon from 2014 to 2022 and Music Director of Berkeley Symphony from 2009 to 2018.

Carneiro is in high demand across the globe, particularly for her focus on contemporary music both in the concert hall and on the opera stage. Recent highlights include engagements with prominent orchestras around the world including the BBC Symphony in London, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra (Ireland), Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, and La Venice in Europe. Further afield, Carneiro has collaborated with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Beijing Orchestra, and São Paulo State Symphony.

2023–2024 season highlights include debuts with the Orchestre National de Bordeaux-Aquitaine in France, Musikkollegium Winterthur in Switzerland, and BBC National Orchestra of Wales, and Bremen Philharmonic in Germany. Joana also returns to Gulbenkian Orchestra in Lisbon and the NAC Orchestra in Ottawa.

A native of Lisbon, she began her musical studies as a violist before receiving her conducting degree from the Academia Nacional Superior de Orquestra in Lisbon, where she studied with Jean-Marc Burfin. She then traveled to the United States where she received her masters degree in orchestral conducting from Northwestern University with Victor Yampolsky and Mallory Thompson, and pursued doctoral studies at the University of Michigan with Kenneth Kiesler.

Carneiro is the 2010 recipient of the Helen M. Thompson Award, conferred by the League of American Orchestras to recognize and honour music directors of exceptional promise. In 2004, Carneiro was decorated by the President of the Portuguese Republic, Mr. Jorge Sampaio, with the Commendation of the Order of the Infante Dom Henrique.

Upcoming events