Natalia Raspopova, a Russian-Australian conductor (b. 1982), is currently working as a freelance guest conductor and concert pianist. As an active guest conductor, she has enjoyed working with the Monash Academy Orchestra, Griffith University Symphony Orchestra, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Opera Queensland, Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Youth Orchestra, Sydney University Symphony Orchestra, Coast Opera Australia, and New Zealand Secondary Schools Symphony Orchestra.
Natalia came to Australia at age sixteen and has performed widely in Australia as a pianist, including an appearance with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra as a concerto soloist. Concerts and important collaborations with singers led Natalia to develop an interest in opera and, subsequently, to the study of conducting.
In 2013, Natalia was selected from a large pool of applicants to be part of the Symphony Services international Conductor Development Program, which saw her working with the Tasmanian Symphony, Melbourne Symphony, Auckland Philharmonia, and Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestras. Natalia was mentored by internationally renowned conductors such as Christopher Seaman, Johannes Fritzsch, Eckehard Stier, and Giordano Bellincampi.
During the 2015-2016 season, Natalia joined the Queensland Symphony Orchestra (QSO) as its first-ever Assistant Conductor, selected from an international pool of seventy applicants. In this role, Natalia assisted international conductors such as Simone Young, Maxim Vengerov, Fabien Gabel, Yu Long, Alondra de la Parra, Ainārs Rubiķis, Jessica Cottis, Rory Macdonald, Johannes Fritzsch, Łukasz Borowicz, Santtu-Matias Rouvali, and Jacques Lacombe. She has also conducted many of QSO’s concerts in her own right—including their family concerts, education programs, and on tour. In 2016-2017, Natalia appeared with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, Monash Academy Orchestra, Queensland Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra, and Opera Queensland. In the same year, Natalia was selected to participate in the Southbank BBC Concert Orchestra (BBCCO) International Masterclass led by Marin Alsop and in the 9th International Masterclass led by David Zinman with the Tonhalle-Orchester. In 2018, Natalia was awarded the Rockend Berlin New Music Opera Award for Young Australians from the Australian Opera Foundation and became a recipient of the Brian Stacey Professional Development Award for Conductors.
In 2021-2022, Natalia worked with the Monash Academy Orchestra, Sydney University Symphony Orchestra, and New Zealand Secondary Schools Symphony Orchestra. Recently, Natalia was chosen as one of 14 finalists in the La Maestra International Competition for Women Conductors in Paris and, in 2023, in the 1st International Ferenc Fricsay Conducting Competition out of 525 applicants.
Currently, Natalia is completing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with Dr. Carolyn Watson and is serving as Assistant Conductor with the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra for the 2023-2024 season.