Nicolette Fraillon AM
Music Director & Chief Conductor
Nicolette Fraillon began her music studies on violin and piano at an early age, furthering her instrumental studies at the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna and in Hannover.
In 1990 Nicolette moved to the Netherlands, where she became Assistant Musical Director for the 1991-92 season of Les Misérables, was invited to conduct for the Nederlands Dans Theater, and became Music Director and Chief Conductor of the National Ballet of the Netherlands. During the following five years she worked with countless orchestras in Northern Europe before taking up the position of Director at the School of Music, Australian National University, and continuing her conducting work with Australian and international companies.
She debuted with The Australian Ballet in 2002, and in 2003 was invited by David McAllister to become Music Director and Chief Conductor.
From 2014-21, Nicolette held the role of Artistic Director of Orchestra Victoria, where she established new concert series, education programs and two regional music festivals.
At the end of 2022, Nicolette left The Australian Ballet after 20 years with the company.
"Fraillon is known for her highly kinetic style and big gestures. The entire emotional arc of this ballet seems mirrored musically in its overture, and she works hard this night to give it shape and life, scything her arms, rocking on her toes, moving at times with the urgency of a jockey urging a horse to the line, at others with the delicacy of a geisha pouring tea." The Australian