Internationally-renowned conductor Xu Zhong is president of Shanghai Opera House, Chief Conductor of Suzhou Symphony Orchestra, Dean of Soochow University School of Music, Artistic Director of Haixia Symphony Orchestra, Principal Director of Fondazione Arena di Verona, and International Chair of Opera of Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama. Between 2012 and 2015, he was Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of Teatro Massimo Bellini and between 2013 and 2019, he was Music Director and Chief Conductor of Israel Haifa Symphony Orchestra.
Xu Zhong received formal piano music education in the class of Dominique Merlet at Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris with the sponsorship of Chow Ching Lie Foundation. As a conductor, he studied with Prof. Xiaotong Huang and Maestro Piero Rattalino. Xu Zhong showed exceptional genius in piano in his early years, and has won numerous prestigious international competitions including Maria Canals, Hamamatsu, Santander Paloma O'Shea, Tokyo and Tchaikovsky. As a soloist, he was frequently invited to perform in most of the prestigious music festivals in Vienna, Luxembourg, Tokyo, Seoul, Beijing, Nice, Naantali and Hamamatsu.
Xu Zhong has actively worked with many prestigious orchestras, including Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano Giuseppe Verdi, Real Orquesta Sinfonica De Sevilla, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, China Philharmonic Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra. His talent in conducting has been acknowledged in the leading opera houses in Europe and worldwide - Teatro alla Scala, Teatro La Fenice, Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Arena di Verona, Liceu Grand Theatre, Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía, Opéra de Paris, Royal Opera House, Oper Leipzig, New York Metropolitan Opera House, San Francisco Opera House and Sydney Opera House. His repertoire includes Pagliacci, Cavalleria Rusticana, La Traviata, Aida, IL Trovatore, La Bohème, Tosca, Turandot, Suor Angelica, La Cenerentola, Le Nozze di Figaro, Der fliegende Holländer, Die Fledermaus, Das Land des Lächelns, Elektra, Carmen, La voix humaine, Orphee aux enfers, Aleko and Don Giovanni.
In 2010, Xu Zhong was awarded the “Chevalier de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres”, and was promoted as the “Officier de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres” in 2018 by the Ministry of Culture and Communication, France, for his contributions in classic music and cultural exchange.
In 2021, Xu Zhong was awarded with the honorary title of International Chair in Opera by the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama. In the meantime, the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World announced Xu Zhong as its External Expert Observer. Cardiff Singer of the World has a long tradition of working with leading musicians and artists including Sir Antonio Pappano, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Sir David Pountney and Sir Brian McMaster among many others.