Music director laureate:
Symphony Nova Scotia, Halifax

Principal guest conductor:
Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra

Music Director Laureate of Symphony Nova Scotia in Canada and principal guest conductor of the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra, Bernhard Gueller continues to be acclaimed for his profound interpretations and the tension, excitement and drama he brings to the podium. “He is a favoured conductor of both of players and audiences, undoubtedly because of his carefully prepared but always musically rewarding performances” ( He is acclaimed by musicians, critics and audiences for his musical purity, and continually garners praise for the fresh approach he applies

Having stepped down in 2018 after 16 years as music director of Symphony Nova Scotia, Gueller stepped into a new role as Music Director Laureate and remains its artistic adviser. In the last seasons, he returned to Symphony Nova Scotia, the Victoria Symphony in Canada where he was previously principal guest conductor, the Edmonton Symphony, the KZN Philharmonic, the Johannesburg Philharmonic and the Free State Symphony. He will be at the Scotia Festival of Music in Halifax for the third time in June.

Gueller has had many high level collaborations with internationally acclaimed soloists such as Canadian artists the violinist James Ehnes and pianists Jan Lisiecki, Janina Fialkowska, Anton Kuerti, Jon Kimura Parker and Marc Andre-Hamelin, along with other international stars such as pianists Stephen Hough and Lars Vogt, violinist Joshua Bell and Metropolitan Opera singers Pretty Yende, Elza van den Heever and the late Johan Botha, as well as Pumeza Matshikiza.

Beginning his career as a cellist, Gueller won the United German Radios Conducting Competition in 1979 and for nearly 20 years ran tandem careers, deputing for the legendary conductor Sergiu Celibidache, who regarded Gueller as his best “pupil”. Gueller also attracted the attention of the renowned arts administrator Ernest Fleischman who “was deeply impressed by his extraordinary musicianship, his marvellous ability to communicate with the musicians, and … his charismatic impact on the audience”.

He has also been music director in Nuremberg and principal guest conductor of the Johannesburg Philharmonic and well as of the Victoria Symphony in Canada. His career has taken him to many top concert halls, from America and Australia to Canada, Russia, Japan, China (Guangzhou, Shanghai, Hong Kong), Korea, South Africa and Brazil, as well as countries in Europe such as Spain, Italy, France, Norway, Bulgaria, Italy and Sweden, and his native Germany where he, for instance, conducted the Stuttgart Radio Symphony and the Munich Philharmonic.

He has participated in the International Festival of the Canary Islands, the Schwetzinger Festival in Germany, the Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival and National Arts Festival in South Africa as well as the Scotia Festival.

Gueller has made many acclaimed recordings for national and international broadcast. His CD, Dancing in the Light, of works by contemporary Canadian composer, Christos Hatzis, with Symphony Nova Scotia, followed a CD with South African mezzo soprano Hanneli Rupert and the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra, and others with the Radio Symphony Orchestra Stuttgart, German Brass and the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra. He has also released two CDs of contemporary Canadian works by Tim Brady which won an East Coast Music award, and a CD of orchestrated lieder by Schubert with the Canadian mezzo-soprano Andrea Ludwig which was proclaimed “a triumph for all” by Canada’s prestigious Whole Note. His latest CD is with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra and cellist Peter Martens with cello concertos of Saint-Saëns and Vieuxtemps which was released in 2019.