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Introducing our



Boston Opera Collaborative welcomes Ken Yanagisawa as the new Music Director!


Ken is a Japanese-American conductor, whose breadth of work spans from Mozart to modern with everything in between.  Ken rounded out the 2022/2023 season as the conductor and music director of the effervescent and highly beloved production of Donizetti’s L'elisir d'amore. In addition to his role with BOC, he also serves as the Assistant Conductor of the Boston Civic Symphony.


This is an exciting time for Boston Opera Collaborative, as the company works to establish itself as a hub for emerging operatic talent in Boston. 


“Ken is an incredible collaborator and musician with vision,” said Alexis Peart, “His approach to ensemble and broad understanding of the music sector as a whole make him an incredible asset to BOC. I am excited to watch how he bring the musical profile of BOC to the next level. I could not think of a better person and colleague to take on this role.”


Ken will work closely with our production and creative team, to oversee all musical aspects of each production, including casting, hiring the orchestra, rehearsing singers and orchestra members, and conducting the orchestra in performance.

Ken Yanagisawa said in a recent statement when asked about his new role with BOC “I am excited and humbled to embark on this artistic journey as Music Director of the Boston Opera Collaborative. As I said in my first rehearsal with BOC, I strongly believe in the spirit of collaboration - the true magic of opera emerges from the collective heartbeat of the artists on and off the stage. I hope to continue to foster this sense of community, push our artistic boundaries, provide a platform for young talent to grow, and create memorable experiences that resonate with audiences.” 

Ken made his Japanese debut conducting Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with Kansai Nikikai and the Japan Century Symphony Orchestra at the Hyogo Performing Arts Center Japan in February 2023, and most recently conducted a production of Arnold Schönberg’s Erwartung for the Boston University Opera Institute. Formerly a Conducting Apprentice with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Ken has worked with the National Symphony Orchestra, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Berlin Academy of American Music, and Plymouth Philharmonic as cover conductor. He has also served as Kapellmeister with the Berlin Opernfest for the past three years, working on productions of Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel, Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Puccini’s Suor Angelica & Gianni Schicchi and Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos, and made his European debut with the Bacau Philharmonic Orchestra in September 2018.

In addition to his work with BOC and the Boston Civic Symphony, Ken is currently completing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Orchestral Conducting from Boston University under the guidance of James Burton. At BU, he frequently conducts the Boston University Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra in concert and has assisted the Boston University Opera Institute productions of Ned Rorem’s Our Town and Mozart’s Così fan tutte as well as the Boston University Symphony Orchestra & Symphonic Chorus performances of Brahms’s "Ein Deutsches Requiem" and Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection” at Boston Symphony Hall.


Ken also holds graduate degrees in conducting from the Manhattan School of Music and a B.A. in music from Yale University. Prior to Yale he attended the New England Conservatory as an Undergraduate Diploma candidate for Oboe Performance under the tutelage of John Ferrillo.

When not conducting, Ken is also an accomplished photorgapher, with his work published TIME, The New York Times, Huffington Post, Boston Globe, and Playbill.

You can check out more about Ken and his work on his website!

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