Born in New York City to a musical family, Mr. Fiore received his earliest musical training from his father, a pianist and choral director, and his mother, a singer. His family moved to Seattle, where he studied piano, cello and other string instruments. Mr. Fiore began his professional musical activities at age 14 as a pianist and coach for the Seattle Opera’s annual production of Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, a job which he continued for six summers. He later attended the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. In 1981, he joined the staff of the Santa Fé Opera, where he developed an affinity for the operas of Richard Strauss.
Within a short period of time, he became a prized assistant in three of North America’s most respected companies: the San Francisco, Chicago Lyric and Metropolitan Operas. In the summer of 1986 he went to Europe, assisting Zubin Mehta for Die Meistersinger in Florence, and then to the Bayreuth Festival, where he worked with Daniel Barenboim on Tristan und Isolde.
During this period he also freelanced as an assistant to the great Leonard Bernstein. John Fiore made his debut at the San Francisco Opera conducting Gounod’s Faust in 1986, thus beginning his own conducting career.
In 1990 he embarked on an international symphonic career as well, making debuts on three continents. Since then Mr. Fiore has continued to build his repertoire and orchestral relationships. In the summer of 1996, stepping in for Robert Shaw, Mr. Fiore made a critically acclaimed debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl conducting Verdi’s Requiem. In North America, he has since conducted the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, Toronto Symphony, and New York Chamber Symphony, to name but a few. In the United States, he has appeared frequently at the Metropolitan Opera as well, leading over one hundred performances of nearly a dozen operas, and he has long enjoyed relationships with both the Chicago Lyric, San Francisco, and Santa Fe Operas, and also has been to the Houston Grand Opera to conduct Tannhäuser.
Mr. Fiore has got orchestral engagements all over Europe and has been the Music Director of several leading opera companies including the Norwegian Opera, where he served from 2009 through 2015 as the institution’s first music director in over a decade. He was also formerly Music Director of the Deutsche Oper-am-Rhein (1998-2009), where he kept an intensive and extensive schedule conducting in the company’s two houses in the neighboring Rhineland cities of Düsseldorf and Duisburg. Concurrent with his appointment at the Deutsche Oper-am-Rhein, Mr. Fiore was also General Music Director of the Düsseldorfer Symphoniker, and led full seasons of symphonic concert repertoire.