British conductor and accompanist David Syrus was Head of Music for The Royal Opera 1993–2017. He joined the Company in 1971 as a répétiteur. He conducted numerous works for the Company, including Le nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni, Die Zauberflöte, Der fliegende Holländer, Salome, Elektra, Ariadne auf Naxos, La traviata, Falstaff, Kát’a Kabanová, The Turn of the Screw, The Midsummer Marriage, Carmen and Fidelio. In his role as Head of Music Syrus managed the music staff, worked closely with The Royal Opera creative teams and provided coaching for singers and conductors.
Syrus grew up in Hastings and studied music at Oxford University. He trained at the London Opera Centre before joining The Royal Opera. Further engagements include Die Walküre, Les Pêcheurs de perles and Eine florentinische Tragödie (Spoleto Festival, 2003), the British premiere of Henze’s Pollicino (Royal Opera House), La clemenza di Tito and Albert Herring (Toulouse), Owen Wingrave (Opéra national du Rhin), Carmen and La Cenerentola (Tokyo), L’elisir d’amore, Die Zauberflöte, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème and Carmen (Crested Butte Music Festival, Colorado) and Billy Budd (Santiago).
Syrus was the conductor for Annette Dasch’s disc of Armida arias for Sony and as an accompanist has recorded a disc of Lieder with Hildegard Behrens for EMI, items from which were re-released on the album The Very Best of Hildegard Behrens.
He is chairman of the Maggie Teyte Prize and sits on many audition panels. Recent masterclasses have been in Düsseldorf, Brecon and Marseille. As a recital accompanist he has played at the Wigmore Hall, London, the Musikverein, Vienna, the Carnegie Hall, New York and many other venues in Europe. His first lieder record with Hildegard Behrens was issued by EMI.