Lü Jia was born in Shanghai in 1964 and studied orchestra conduction with Professor Zhen Xiao Ying at the Central Conservatoire in Beijing. In 1989 he moved to Berlin to attend specialization classes with Maestro Hans Martin Rabenstein. He has been living in Italy since 1990, the year in which he won the ‘Antonio Pedrotti’ Competition in Trento which enabled him to be brought to the attention of the public and the critics for being one of the best young orchestra conductors over the last number of years.
From 1991 to 1995 he was principal Conductor at the Teatro Verdi in Trieste and from 1993 to 1998 of the Orchestra Regionale of Tuscany. In 1999 he became the principal Conductor of the Norrköping Symphonic Orchestra in Sweden.
In Italy he has conducted the orchestras of the following theatres: Santa Cecilia, Teatro dell’opera in Rome, Teatro San Carlo in Naples, Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova, OSN of RAI, Teatro Regio in Torino, Teatro Comunale in Bologna, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and Teatro Lirico in Cagliari.
In Europe he has conducted the Gewandhaus in Leipzig, the NDR in Hamburg, the Oslo Philharmonic, the European Chamber Orchestra, the Bamberg Symphonic Orchestra, the National Orchestra of Lyon and the Bournemouth Symphonic Orchestra.
His debut in the USA took place in 1995 at the Ravinia Festival where he conducted the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
In 1996 he made his debut in Australia with the Symphonic Orchestra of Melbourne and Sydney where he returned for the 1998/1999 and 1999/2000 seasons.
He has collaborated with artists such as Viktoria Mullova, Natalia Gutman, Gil Shaham, Krystian Zimerman, Midori, Barbara Hendricks, Radovan Vlatkovic, Uto Ughi, Franco Gulli and Christian Lindberg.
Opera has played a fundamental part in Lü Jia’s career. His Italian debut took place in Italy in Trieste with the opera Zemlinsky Das Geburstag der Infantin; once again in Trieste he conducted The Magic Flute, L'Elisir d'amore and Lucia di Lammermoor. At the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome and at the Teatro San Carlo in Naples Il matrimonio segreto by Cimaraso. In Ferrara La Clemenza di Tito, in Cagliari Le Nozze di Figaro (1996), L'Elisir d'amore (1997) and Turandot (1999).
In 2000 he was invited by the RAI National Symphonic Orchestra in Turin to accompany the concerts for the semi-finals and finals of the Maria Callas Competition. Lü Jia has recorded a series of CDs with the Norrköpping Orchestra which include music by Schönberg/Brahms, as well as the complete opera by Lindholm, the most important contemporary composer from Sweden.
In May 2003 he was invited to conduct the Philharmonic Orchestra of La Scala, for a programme which included the participation of the violinist Viktoria Mullova. Last season Lü Jia made his successful debut with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and the Symphonic Orchestra of Birmingham.
Future engagements include concerts with the Symphonic Orchestra of Radio Finland, the Bournemouth Symphony, the Scottish Chamber, the Halle Orchestra of Manchester, the Saarbrucken Radio Symphony, l’OSN RAI in Turin and the Stavager Symphony Orchestra.
In December he conducted a concert with music by Dvorák and Boccadoro at the Teatro Filarmonico in Verona.
In February 2006 Maestro Lü Jia was nominated Musical Director of the Fondazione Arena di Verona for the 2006-2007 biennium. The task foresees a continued collaboration in relation to opera and symphonic activities as well as various other projects.