English conductor Martin West made his Royal Ballet debut in the 2013/14 Season conducting The Nutcracker.
West was born in Bolton and studied at St Catharine's College, Cambridge, St Petersburg State Conservatory and the Royal Academy of Music. He made his debut with English National Ballet in 1997 upon which he was appointed Resident Conductor, later becoming the company's Principal Conductor. He has worked as a guest conductor with companies around the world, including New York City Ballet, Houston Ballet and National Ballet of Canada, and with orchestras including the Hallé, Holland Symfonia, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Silicon Valley Symphony. He was conductor of the Cambridge Philharmonic (1998–2005), during which time he also toured with Pimlico Opera. He was appointed to his current position as Musical Director and Principal Conductor of San Francisco Ballet in 2005.
West's numerous recordings with the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra include The Nutcracker, Coppelia and Sylvia. He also conducted on San Francisco Ballet’s broadcasts of Helgi Tómasson’s The Nutcracker and an award-winning recording of John Neumeier’s The Little Mermaid.