Matthew Toogood is a Berlin and Bern based conductor and pianist. Since August 2019 he holds the position of 1. Kapellmeister and Music Director of the Opera ad interim at the Konzert Theater Bern, Switzerland. During his first season he conducts a wide range of repertoire, including the Premieres of Rossini's Il barbiere di Siviglia, the Swiss Premiere of Szymanowski's Król Roger, Smetana‘s Die verkaufte Braut, and Luigi Nono‘s Intolleranza. Other performances include Puccini‘s Madama Butterfly, Bizet‘s Carmen, and Debussy‘s Pelleas et Mélisande.
From 2016 until 2019 Mr Toogood was Kapellmeister and Assistant to the General Music Director, Alexander Soddy, at the Nationaltheater Mannheim. In his first season he conducted the Premiere of Spoliansky's Wie werde ich reich und glücklich, revival performances of Hänsel und Gretel, My Fair Lady, The Merry Widow, numerous family and cross-over concerts, and assisted for Elektra and Aida. During the 2017/2018 season he conducted performances of Aida, Norma, La cenerentola, Turandot, Cavalleria Rusticana, Pagliacci, Hänsel und Gretel, Die Zauberflöte, My Fair Lady, Wie werde ich reich und glücklich and the Premiere of Vespertine after the Album by Björk (recorded and available on OMEGA label). He assists on the productions of Der Rosenkavalier, Tannhäuser und Don Giovanni. During his third and final season in Mannheim, Mr Toogood conducted the Premiere and Co-operation Dance production Sanssouci, which included works based on JS Bach, and Handel‘s Dixit Dominus, and Prokofiev‘s Die Liebe zu drei Orangen, Offenbach‘s Orpheus in der Unterwelt, Orff‘s Carmina Burana, Mozart‘s Don Giovanni, Bellini‘s Norma, Humperdinck‘s Hänsel und Gretel, and prepared Wagner‘s Parsifal and Die Meistersingers von Nürnberg, and Strauss‘ Salome.
In 2017 Mr Toogood was invited to conduct Hänsel und Gretel at the Theater Chemnitz , and in 2019 by the Konzert Theater Bern to conduct Puccini‘s La Boheme.
Mr Toogood was on the music staff of the Komische Oper Berlin for 4 seasons (2010-2014), during which time he assisted on over 40 productions, including Reimann’s Lear, Dvorak’s Rusalka and Janacek’s Cunning Little Vixen. During this time he was responsible for conducting the off-/backstage orchestras in Wagner's Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier and Mozart's Don Giovanni. In 2014 he conducted performances at the Komische Oper Berlin of Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel and Prokofiev’s Peter und der Wolf. In 2017 he returned as guest conductor for a re-working of Monteverdi/Kats-Chernin's Die Krönung der Poppea and the revival of Monteverdi/Kats-Chernin's Orpheus.
Mr Toogood has worked with Sir Simon Rattle at the Berliner Philharmoniker, Simon Halsey at the Rundfunkchor Berlin, Axel Kober at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, interned at Oper Frankfurt, accompanied the Bundeswettbewerb Gesangs and taught at the Musik Landesakademie Hessen.
As Artistic Director and Conductor of Shoestring Opera Melbourne Mr Toogood has produced successful chamber productions, most recently in Berlin with a production of Mozart‘s La clemenza di tito, and previously Offenbach's Le 66 as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival in April 2016. Other work in Australia has included being part of the inaugural and subsequent Nagambie Lakes Opera Festival, conducting concerts with the Stonnington Symphony Orchestra, and numerous seasons with Melbourne Opera, conducting productions of Pagliacci, Cavalleria Rusticana, Tosca, La Traviata, La Boheme and Cosi fan tutte.
Mr Toogood was a semi-finalist at the 2011 Blue Danube International Opera Conducting Competition and winner of the 2007 Stonnington Symphony Conductor Prize.
He has participated in Masterclasses with Jorma Panula, Colin Metters, Johannes Fritzsch, Christopher Seaman, Sebastian Lang-Lessing and Geoffrey Lancaster, conducting the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, The Queensland Orchestra and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. He completed his Masters of Music (Conducting) with John Hopkins OBE in 2008.