John Gunnar Rafael Storgårds (born 20 October 1963 in Helsinki) is a Finnish violinist and conductor.
Storgårds studied violin with Esther Raitio and Jouko Ignatius at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, and continued his violin studies with Chaim Taub in Israel. He was a founding member of the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra. After experience leading orchestras from the front desk of the violin section, his interest in conducting increased after an invitation to conduct the Helsinki University Symphony Orchestra. He subsequently returned to the Sibelius Academy from 1993-1997 to study conducting with Jorma Panula and Eri Klas.
In 1996, Storgårds became Artistic Director of the Chamber Orchestra of Lapland. With the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, he became Principal Guest Conductor in 2003 and subsequently Chief Conductor in autumn 2008, for an initial contract of 4 years. His Helsinki contract has since been extended to 2014. In October 2013, the orchestra further extended his contract through December 2015. Storgårds concluded his Helsinki tenure in December 2015. From 2006 to 2009, Storgårds was Chief Conductor of the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra. Storgårds has held the Artistic Directorships of many summer festivals, most recently of the Korsholm Music Festival between 2004–2006, and Avanti's! Summer Sounds Festival. Outside of Finland, in March 2011, Storgårds was appointed principal guest conductor of the BBC Philharmonic, effective January 2012, succeeding Vassily Sinaisky. In January 2015, Storgårds was named the new principal guest conductor of the National Arts Centre Orchestra (NACO), only the second conductor ever to hold the title, effective with the 2015-2016 season with an initial contract of 3 seasons.
Storgårds received the Finnish State Prize for Music in 2002. He has made a number of international recordings for Ondine, Sony, BIS, and Da Capo Records, including recordings of music by Andrzej Panufnik, John Corigliano, and Per Nørgård. His recording of Pēteris Vasks' Violin Concerto Distant Light and Second Symphony won the Cannes Classical Disc of the Year Award in 2004. In 2014, his recording with the BBC Philharmonic of the complete symphonies of Jean Sibelius was released, including his second recording of three fragments of the Eighth Symphony.
Storgårds, his wife and their two sons live in Rovaniemi.