French-born conductor Chloé Dufresne recently won the Orchestra prize, the Audience prize and a "special mention" exæquo with al the finilist from the Besançon International Competition for young conductors 2021. She is also the 3rd prize winner of the Malko conducting competition 2021 and finalist of the Siemens-Hallé International Conductors Competition 2020. She was also Laureate of the Tremplin des jeunes cheffes organised by La Philharmonie de Paris in 2018.
She graduated as a Master from the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki.
Chloé Dufresne initially studied viola, vocal performance and choral conducting. From 2015 to 2020 she has studied orchestra conducting with Maestri Atso Almila and Sakari Oramo at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. In 2018-2019 she was an exchange student at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris, learning under the guidance of Alain Altinoglu.
Chloé has participated in masterclasses with renowned conductors such as Paavo Jarvi,
Mikko Franck, Johannes Schlaefli, David Zinman, Susanna Mälkki, Hannu Lintu.
She has been fortunate to conduct first-class orchestras such as the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Helsinki City Orchestra, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Sinfonia Lahti, Ensemble Intercontemporain.
Her professional projects led Chloe Dufresne to assist Finnish conductor Sakari Oramo at the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic and the Kokkola Opera. She is also invited for several symphonic concerts with Opéra de Rouen, Opéra national de Lorraine, Orchestre national d’Auvergne, Opéra de Vichy and Philharmonie de Paris where she made her debut with the Orchestre Pasdeloup in 2020.
Reccently she made her debut with Orchestre national de France with whom she also recorded the Marseillaise for the handover ceremony of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2021-Paris 2024.
When it comes to opera repertoire, Chloé was invited to conduct Bayreuth production of Wagner's Ring for children in Helsinki festival (August 2019), Bellini’s Norma in ‘Narva Opera Days’ (2019), Offenbach's Pomme d'Api in Opéra de Toulon (November 2019). She assisted Sakari Oramo for Meyerbeer’s Etoile du Nord in Kokkola Opera, and Jérome Pillement for Donizetti's La fille du régiment in Opéra de Montpellier.
Among her future projects, Chloé Dufresne conducts Offenbach's Le Voyage dans la lune at Opéra de Nice and Opéra de Limoges ; she will return to conduct Opéra de Rouen’s orchestra ; she is invited to conduct, Orchestre national d’Ile-de-France, Orchestre national de Montpellier Occitanie. In Finland she will conduct Vaasa City orchestra and Pori Sinfonietta.
"Et de trois : la Française les entraîne dans une dernière partie de finale, passionnante !
[...] Chloé Dufresne, dès les premières notes, parvient à suspendre la musique là-haut. Elle joue des timbres de l’orchestre d’une magnifique façon, ose [...], et parvient à un fascinant fourmillement intérieur dans une partition dont elle comprend et accompagne la progression.
Le Sibelius des deux premiers finalistes manquaient d’âpreté, de granit pourrait-on dire. C’est tout le contraire sous une baguette qui affirme une singulière identité sonore. On est séduit par une approche vivante et très chorégraphique de l’épisode médian, par l’énergie que la jeune femme capte dès le premier mouvement et parvient à dompter pour mieux la faire rayonner dans le finale. [...] du point vue de l’originalité des choix interprétatifs, la prestation de Chloé Dufresne séduit infiniment."
Alain Cochard, Concert Classic
"Chloé Dufresne endeared herself from Round 1 with a rare combination of humility and authority (admitting ‘I forgot what I was going to say there…’ certainly helped). She put her mark on Haydn’s London symphony through gesture alone and took the world’s most renowned Nielsen orchestra confidently into the most complex section of the composer’s Symphony No 5 – a gamble that paid off.
Chloé is another conductor who has grown through the competition, and her imposing performance in the semi-final might explain why we’ll be seeing her on Saturday. Other candidates conducted Bryström’s A Drama in the Air as if they were listening to it. Chloé took control of the piece, telling its story, picking at its colours, literally ‘conducting’ its magic.
It was a joy to hear Chloé account of Debussy’s Prélude à l'après-midi d'un Faune. She kept her arms by her side for the opening bars, allowing the DNSO’s principal flute Ulla Miilmann to play her solo with unfettered beauty – as empowering a gesture as any conductor can hope to make. From then on, the piece was full of breath, fresh air and soufflé lightness."
Andrew Mellor, Gramophone
"The conductor made every phrase flourish. The whole concert breathed solid musical collaboration between the musicians and the talented young French conductor Chloé Dufresne [...] The talented young French conductor Chloé Dufresne was responsible for the solid guidance through the tonal landscape. [...]
Dufresne was meticulous with the details throughout the concert, and made every phrase come to life and flourish. The orchestra responded alertly to her instructions. In the last movements allegro vivace and allegro molto, she really got the musicians to take to the turbo mode without the resilience cramping - the feeling was that the music lifted."
"Brave Mendelssohn and swinging Shostakovich.[...] Dufresne and Chiodo convincing at a young musicians' traditional symphony orchestra concert. [...] Chloé Dufresne, who has already gained international experience in the final stages of her education, conducts sharply, energetically and clearly, technically superb and interpretively purposeful. [...] No problem for Chiodo, Dufresne and the orchestra, which merged into a frictionless working team that accompanied the listener through the darkness."
Heidi Korhonen – Björkman