John Warner

Lies Askonas Fellow
Founder & Artistic Director, Orchestra for the Earth
Chief Conductor, Central London Orchestra


John Warner studied Music at St Peter’s College, Oxford, graduating with First Class Honours in 2016, and an MSt with Distinction in 2017. He is Founder and Artistic Director of the Orchestra for the Earth, and Chief Conductor of the Central London Orchestra. Recent conducting engagements include staged excerpts from Tristan und Isolde at the Sheldonian Theatre (Oxford), Smyth’s The Boatswain’s Mate at Grimeborn Opera Festival, masterclasses with the Britten Pears Orchestra and Marin Alsop, and guest appearances with Oxford Chamber Orchestra, Oxford Sinfonia, and the Orchestra of St. John’s.

He performs regularly across the UK and Europe with his Orchestra for the Earth in a series of concerts aimed at engaging new audiences with climate change and the natural world, including performances at the UK Houses of Parliament and the Gustav Mahler ‘Music Weeks’ in Toblach, Italy.

Upcoming projects include a return to Grimeborn with Amy Beach’s Cabildo, a debut with the Oxford University Orchestra, a masterclass with the BBC Philharmonic, and Mahler’s Fourth Symphony in Amsterdam as part of Het Concertgebouw’s Mahler Festival 2020.

For more information, please contact Henry Lindsay. 

  • More info  
    29 Aug 19 Beach: Cabildo Grimeborne Opera
    Arcola Theatre, London

    “Musical director John Warner revelled in the drama of the ferociously difficult piano part, wrestling huge, Tristan-esque climaxes from the Arcola’s upright.”
    Flora Willson, The Guardian, 1 September 2019

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    30 Jul 18 Smyth: The Boatswain's Mate Grimeborne Opera
    Arcola Theatre, London

    “John Warner, leading the accompaniment from the piano, delivers Smyth’s score (in a piano trio) with exceptional care and skill […] Disarming, surprising and brilliant.”
    Charlotte Valori, Operissima, 31 July 2018

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    09 Jul 17 Mahler Symphony No. 9 Orchestra for the Earth

    “The orchestra played with passion, verve, and musicality conducted by exacting and mesmerising conductor John Warner. It remained in my mind as one of the high points in the festival but also as a conductor and orchestra to follow.”
    Marina Mahler, July 2017

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    12 Jun 17 Mahler Symphony No. 9 Oxford Philharmonic
    SJE Arts, Oxford

    “I detected a marked degree of respect and affection towards him from his players suggestive of, among other virtues, a collaborative approach.”

    “By now it was evident that Mr Warner would not be making of himself the focal point of the performance. His movements were restrained and precise, every one of them in the service of Mahler’s score.”
    Andrew Bell, Daily Information, June 2017

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    18 Feb 18 Mahler Symphony No. 6 St. Peter's Chamber Orchestra
    Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford

    “What was abundantly clear, even from the balcony, however, was how well Warner knew and loved the score, and how firmly the orchestra trusted in his interpretation and authority in this performance.”

    “This magnificent pacing of the Andante was no doubt achieved because of the musical sensitivity and vision of conductor John Warner, who gracefully guided the ensemble through this luscious movement.”
    Hannah Schneider, Oxford Culture Review, 24 March 2017

    “The most viscerally exciting I have ever heard.”
    Peter Franklin, (author of Life of Mahler), February 2017

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    29 Oct 16 Shostakovich, Elgar, Strauss St. Peter's Chamber Orchestra
    St Peter's College, Oxford

    “Conductor John Warner demonstrated impressive control of tempi and dynamics in Richard Strauss’s Metamorphosen, imbuing this slowly developing work with a clear sense of shape and direction.”
    Emma Brown, Oxford Culture Review, 5 November 2016