Jean-Sébastien Béreau entered the Paris Conservatoire at the age of nine, having studied with Darius Milhaud, Olivier Messiaen, Louis Fourestier and Maurice Martenot, among others. He was appointed director of the Metz Conservatoire and Principal Conductor of the Metz Symphony Orchestra when he was still in his twenties; later on, he was successively appointed director of the Rouen and Strasbourg Conservatoires.
From 1982 to 1997 he taught Orchestral Conducting at the “Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris”, where he was responsable for the activities of three orchestras; he collaborated with Pierre Boulez and Leonard Bernstein.
Along with his pedagogical activity, Jean-Sébastien Béreau has developped an intense international conducting career. Besides his appointements as Principal Conductor of the Metz and Rouen Symphony Orchestras, of the “Chanteurs de Saint Eustache” Chorale, in Paris, and of the “Chorale Strasbourgeoise”, in Strasbourg, he conducted some of the most prestigious orchestras in Paris, Moscow, Bruxels, Luxembourg, Lisbon, Rome, Manila, Taipé, among others. He conducted the “Orchestre des Mille”, gathering one thousand musiciens chosen amongst the soloists of all main french orchestras.
He collaborated with soloists such as Aldo Ciccolini, Samson François, Pierre Barbizet, Robert Casadesus, Paul Badura-Skoda, Philippe Entremont, Tatiana Nicolaeva, Yvonne Loriod, Roger Muraro, Maria João Pires, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Jean Guillou, Yuri Bashmet, Jean-Pierre Rampal, Pierre-Yves Artaud, Pascal Moraguès, Maurice Allard, Maurice André, Tierry Caens, Bernard Soustrot, Régine Crespin, Nicolai Gedda, among many others. Pascal Verrot, Pascal Rophé, Vincent Barthe and Martin Lebel are some of the very many conductors whom he taught.
He has been distinguished with several french awards, such as the prestigious “Ordre du Mérite”, as well as with the W. and N. Copley Foundation Composition prize. He presently teaches orchestral conducting at the “Conservatoire à rayonnement regional de Lille”.