An assistant conductor for LACO in the 2003–04 season, Joana Carneiro currently serves as the principal guest conductor of the Metropolitan Orchestra of Lisbon and official guest conductor of the Gulbenkian Orchestra. The Berkeley Symphony recently announced that she will succeed Kent Nagano as music director in the fall of 2009.
As a finalist in the prestigious 2002 Maazel-Vilar Conductor’s Competition at Carnegie Hall, Carneiro was recognized by the jury for demonstrating a level of potential that holds great promise for her future career. Since then, her profile has grown quickly both in the US and Europe, and recent engagements include performances with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony, Toledo Symphony Orchestra (Ohio), the Macau Chamber and Beijing orchestras at the International Musica Festival of Macau (China), the Portuguese National Symphony Orchestra and the Beiras Philharmonic Orchestra.
Carneiro made her subscription debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2006–07 and served as the assistant conductor for John Adams’ opera, A Flowering Tree, in Vienna, which she debuted with the Chicago Opera Theater in the 2007–08 season.
A native of Lisbon, Carneiro began her musical studies as a violist before receiving her conducting degree from the Academia Nacional Superior de Orquestra in Lisbon. She received her master’s in orchestral conducting from Northwestern University and pursued
doctoral studies at the University of Michigan. One of three conductors chosen to participate in the newly founded Allianz Cultural Foundation International Conductors’ Academy in London during 2003–04, she also won the Young Musicians Foundation’s 2002 National Conductor Search. Carneiro served as assistant conductor with the Los Angeles Philharmonic for several seasons.
In 2004, Carneiro was decorated by the President of the Portuguese Republic.