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"Mr. Hirzer brought a combination of detailed accuracy and intense musical feeling to the work [Mr. Tambourine Man], resulting in an absolutely marvelous performance." - John Corigliano

"...the orchestra under Karl Hirzer providing a balanced, sympathetic accompaniment. Bartok’s quirky rhythms and melodies were idiomatically rendered, with much humour and nervous energy. Everything seemed to fall into place, the performance a delight from start to finish." - Calgary Herald

"The Szczecin Philharmonic was conducted by Karl Hirzer, a 29-year old Canadian musician recognized by critics as a rising star in the world of conducting." - Radio Szczecin


Canadian musician Karl Hirzer is a conductor, pianist and composer from New Westminster, British Columbia. He has held the position of Resident, then Associate Conductor with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra since 2016. Active internationally, Hirzer has led performances with ensembles such as the Sczcecin Philharmonic, Symphony Nova Scotia, Regina Symphony Orchestra, Gstaad Festival Orchestra, and the Orchestra Giovanile Italiana. He works regularly with new music titans Land’s End Ensemble, having collaborated on a number of critically acclaimed commercial recordings.

Mr. Hirzer has previously acted as Assistant Conductor for the National Academy Orchestra of Canada and the McGill Contemporary Music Ensemble, as well as Assistant Chorus Master of the Calgary Philharmonic Chorus. A steadfast educator, Hirzer was a faculty member at the 22nd Morningside Music Bridge program in Warsaw.

A diverse musician and collaborator, he has performed with numerous renowned soloists including Evelyn Glennie, Chris Botti, Agata Szymczewska, Jonathan Crow and Owen Pallett. Trained as a pianist, Hirzer holds bachelor’s (University of Victoria) and master’s (McGill University) degrees in performance, as well as an Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto diploma, obtained at age seventeen.