William-Michael Costello was raised in Lincoln and Burlington, two
little towns located in the US state Massachusetts. His musical studies
began in the mid sixties at the New England Conservatory of Music. He
took classes with Professor Albert Y. Bernard in solfÃ¨ge, score reading
and musical theory. As a violin student he was coached by Leonard G.
Moss and Max G. Winder, both members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
During his studies he played with the first violins at the Boston youth
orchestra G.B.Y.S.O. For his bachelor of music in violin playing and
orchestra conducting he moved on to the Boston University School for
the Arts. He was both founder and musical director of the Sinfonia
Chamber Orchestra at the Boston University, participated in master
classes with Roman Totenberg and later on was coached by Kato Havas
(Oxford, UK). As a violin student he played with various orchestras,
including the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Boston Ballet Orchestra.
1969 he won the conducting competition at the International Festival of
Youth Orchestras in St. Moritz (Switzerland). For this he was later
honoured by Francis Sergeant, the Governor of Massachusetts, and
received a scholarship to study with Walter Susskind and the St. Louis
Symphony Orchestra. During this time he joined the American Institute
of Orchestral Conducting under the leadership of Walter Susskind,
Leonard Slatkin and Louis Lane. He appeared with both the St. Louis
Symphony Orchestra and the Webster Groves Symphony Orchestra. Yet
another conducting scholarship was given to him for the Tanglewood
Berkshire Music Center, where he was taught by Leonard Bernstein, Bruno
Maderna, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Michael Tilson Thomas and Seiji Ozawa.
1972 he conducted the worldÂ´s premiere of Ira TaxinÂ´s Chamberwork in
Two Parts as part of the Fromm week at the Tanglewood Music Festival.
Appearances at the Boston Esplanade followed as well as with the
Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra of
In the mid seventies he moved to Berlin, Germany. As a violinist he
worked with several orchestras and chamber music ensembles such as the
Berlin Symphonic Orchestra, the Berlin Baroque Orchestra, the
orchestra of the Theater des Westens, the Haydn Orchestra and the
studio orchestras of the radio stations SFB and RIAS.
Since the beginning of the nineties William-Michael Costello has had
guest-conducting appearances in Europe. In Poland his main engagements
were with the Pomeranian Philharmonic Orchestra in Bydgoszcz, the
Philharmonic Orchestra Arthur Rubinstein, the Wroclaw Philharmonic
Orchestra and the Philharmonic Orchestra Opole. His conducting
credits in Spain include the Orquesta de la Comunidad de Madrid, the
Bilbao Orkestra Sinfinikoa and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra of
Galicia. His profound orchestral experience as a violinist was of major
significance for the success with those numerous ensembles. At the end
of last century he met Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, chief conductor of the
Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin, German Opera Berlin and the Vienna
Symphonic Orchestra, who has since become his artistic mentor. Further
appearances followed in Madrid, Bilbao, Malaga, Valencia, Warsaw and
Scandinavia, more are planned for the coming seasons.
He is the brother of the ArtistPainter Michael Costello in Boston,
Massachusetts. He is a member of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation for