Juan Montoya

Collaborative Artist

Juan Montoya

Resident Conductor

Kuala Lumpur City Opera

Featured in:

RondoFest 2021


Colombian conductor Juan Montoya has been the recipient of several international prizes, and his career includes various invitations as a guest conductor around the world.

His most recent opera engagements have included productions of L’Elisir d’Amore (2014), La Bohème (2016), La Fille du Regiment (2017), The Marriage of Figaro (2017), Hansel and Gretel (2018), Madama Butterfly (2018), La Traviata (2019), and The Magic Flute (2019) with the KLCO – Kuala Lumpur City Opera (Malaysia), where he has served as chief conductor since 2014. Also, the productions of Madama Butterfly in 2017 with the Rousse Opera in Bulgaria and in 2018 with the Hungarian Opera at Cluj-Napoca.

His symphonic concert engagements have included performances with the Malaysian Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, Bentley Repertoire Orchestra, and UiTM Symphony Orchestra (Malaysia), EAFIT Symphony Orchestra (Colombia), Surabaya Symphony Orchestra (Indonesia), Michoacán Symphony Orchestra (Mexico), the National Symphony Orchestra of Paraguay, Cairo Symphony Orchestra (Egypt), and the Tucson Symphony Orchestra (USA).

He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in orchestral and opera conducting from the University of Arizona Fred Fox School of Music, as a student of Dr. Thomas Cockrell. He also works under the tutelage of Vance George of the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. Earlier, Montoya earned a double master’s degree in piano performance and orchestral conducting from the University of Toledo, Ohio in 2009, and a bachelor’s degree in piano performance from the EAFIT University, in Medellín, Colombia in 2006.

Montoya’s awards include: Order of Merit “Don Juan del Corral – Silver Category (2019),” one of the highest civilian distinctions, given by the government of Colombia and the City Council of Medellín for his outstanding international performance career. In April of 2019, Montoya got nominated and won the “Best Music Director” award at the 16th BOH Cameronian Arts Awards in Malaysia, the most important art awards of this country. A third place at the prestigious “Blue Danube International Opera Conducting Competition” in Rousse, Bulgaria in 2017. First Prize (Golden Baton) at the “International Orchestral Conducting Competition” with the National Symphony Orchestra of Paraguay in 2016. A special mention from the jury at the “Second Black Sea Opera Conducting Competition,” in Constanța, Romania in 2016.

Juan Montoya now resides in Malaysia where he is the resident conductor of the KLCO – Kuala Lumpur City Opera, a post he has held since 2014, and the Director of Orchestral Studies at the UiTM University.

Future conducting engagements include Carmen opera in Malaysia, and guest conducting concerts and opera productions in Mexico, Paraguay, Hungary, Romania, Colombia and the United States.


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