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John’s conducting credits include I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky (Royal Opera House), Trouble in Tahiti and A Hand of Bridge (Southwark Theatre), The Cradle Will Rock (Battersea Arts Centre), Sunday in the Park with George (National Theatre). Composer credits include the York Cycle of Mystery Plays, and productions at the Donmar and the King’s Head. He collaborated with Stephen Sondheim on a presentation of Sondheim's unpublished songs at the Lyttelton Theatre. He is founder and artistic director of the London Jazz Sinfonia and Opera24, and has worked with Cleo Laine, Guy Barker, the late John Dankworth, Stacey Kent, Alan Barnes, Digby Fairweather, Jacqui Dankworth and Julian Stringle. TV appearances include Omnibus and The Late Show, and on radio most recently on BBC Radio 3’s In Tune.Back
John Jansson is a versatile conductor, composer and pianist, bringing flair and commitment to each role he undertakes. Trained at the Royal Academy of Music and
Trinity College of Music, he has worked extensively in the theatre, but is equally at home directing orchestral music and opera in repertoire from the 18th to the
21st centuries. He is an experienced arranger and editor of music, and can step outside the classical idiom with panache, having been brought up in a home where
both parents were jazz musicians.
His commitment to contemporary classical music appeared early his career when he formed the Blue Rider Ensemble while still a student, giving several premieres including works by Walton, MacMillan, Tavener and Takemitsu. At the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Studio he conducted the London premiere of John Adams’s I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky (also at the Huddersfield Festival of Contemporary Music), and he was the conductor for Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti and Barber’s A Hand of Bridge (Southwark Theatre) and Marc Blitzstein’s The Cradle Will Rock (Battersea Arts Centre). He also worked with composer Dominic Muldowney and the BBC Symphony Orchestra on the premiere of Three Pieces for Orchestra, devising the electronic cueing system for this work. With the Opera24 company, of which he is the artistic director, he conducted Così fan Tutte for the 2013 Grimeborn festival, as well as its 2014 revival. Forthcoming opera engagements include La Bohème, Wozzeck and the world première of Marc Blitzstein’s No For An Answer.
He is the artistic director of the London Jazz Sinfonia, a virtuoso ensemble of the finest jazz and classical musicians currently working in the UK. He has worked with Cleo Laine, Guy Barker, Stacey Kent, Jacqui Dankworth, Henry Lowther and the late John Dankworth. He has arranged for Digby Fairweather, Alan Barnes, and Julian Marc Stringle's Dream Band. He has recently been working with Tina May and some of these arrangements have featured on her highly accalimed latest album My Kinda Love. His arrangement for big band and solo clarinet of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue and his own composition Fires on the Beach are shortly to be published by Kevin Bell Music. He is currently writing arrangements for a new album with Julian Marc Stringle, and working with Jacqui Dankworth on a forthcoming show dedicated to the work of Billy Strayhorn.
His theatrical credits include conducting several productions at the Royal National Theatre, among them Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park with George (Olivier Award), Brecht’s The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (with Antony Sher) and Deborah Warner's production of The Good Person of Sichuan. He also worked with the late Mel Smith on The Gambler (Jermyn Street Theatre). His theatrical composer credits include critically acclaimed scores for the York Cycle of Mystery Plays, and numerous productions in London and throughout the country. His musical Sharp Focus was performed at London's King’s Head, and he has written for community projects in Banbury, Kilburn and Bridlington. He also collaborated with Stephen Sondheim on a presentation of Sondheim's unpublished songs at the National’s Lyttelton Theatre.
He and his music have appeared many times on radio, most recently on BBC Radio 3's "In Tune", and his TV appearances include The Late Show and Omnibus. John Jansson’s credits also include three CDs: The Isles of Greece, an orchestral song cycle arranged from the serious songs of Donald Swann, a disc of Hoagy Carmichael songs (arrangements for Digby Fairweather) and Tina May's latest album My Kinda Love. He has also edited a number of collections of Donald Swann's songs for Lengnick and Thames, and is currently editing the piano works of Marc Blitzstein. His educational work has included lecturing and performing posts at Goldsmith’s College, London University.