Janowski has served as music director in Freiburg and at the Dortmund Opera conducting the Dortmunder Philharmoniker, the latter from 1973 to 1979. He served as Kapellmeister of the Gürzenich Orchestra in Cologne, from 1986 to 1990. Earlier, in 1984, he became the music director of the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France (then called the Nouvel Orchestre Philharmonique) in Paris, a position he held until 2000. From 2000 to 2009, Janowski served as Principal Conductor of the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra. He was also Principal Conductor of the Dresden Philharmonic from 2001 to 2004.
Since 2002, he has been the chief conductor of the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, with a contract for life with the orchestra at the time. He is scheduled to conclude his Berlin tenure after the 2015-2016 season.In the 2005/06 season, Janowski began his tenure as Artistic and Music Director of the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (OSR), with an initial contract of five years. In September 2008, his contract with the OSR was extended to 2015. However, in January 2010, in a change to the September 2008 contract extension, Janowski and the OSR mutually agreed on the scheduled conclusion of his directorship of the OSR after the 2011-2012 season.
In the USA, beginning in 2005, Janowski served as one of the conductors in a "triumvirate" of conductor leadership with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO), with Sir Andrew Davis and Yan Pascal Tortelier, providing artistic guidance for the orchestra in the absence of a single music director. This arrangement ended in 2008 after the accession of Manfred Honeck as the PSO's music director. Janowski now holds the Otto Klemperer Guest Conductor Chair with the PSO. He has recorded the four symphonies of Johannes Brahms with the PSO.
Janowski has conducted most of the major opera houses of the world (including Arabella, Salome and Die Entführung aus dem Serail at the Metropolitan Opera). He has made a number of operatic recordings, including the first digital recording of the complete Ring Cycle of Richard Wagner between 1980 and 1983 for RCA, with the Staatskapelle Dresden. He and that orchestra had earlier made the first recordings of Die schweigsame Frau by Richard Strauss, in 1976 for EMI, and of Euryanthe by Carl Maria von Weber, in 1974 for Philips, with Jessye Norman and Nicolai Gedda singing the lead roles. Another operatic first recording was of Krysztof Penderecki's The Devils of Loudun with the Hamburg State Opera, shortly after he led the world premiere of the work in 1969.
- Andrew Druckenbrod (2008-02-01). "PSO greeted by carnival atmosphere in Cologne; makes 'special' visit to Wuppertal". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2009-03-15.
- Kevin Shihoten (23 October 2007). "Monte Carlo Philharmonic Names New Director". Playbill Arts. Retrieved 2007-10-25.
- "Der Dirigent Marek Janowski wird 70". Die Welt. 2009-02-18. Retrieved 2009-03-15.
- Peter Uehling (2015-09-22). "Vladimir Jurowski wird RSB-Chefdirigent". Berliner Zeitung. Retrieved 2015-09-23.
- "L'Orchestre de la Suisse romande conforte son avenir et offre un CD à tous les Genevois". Tribune de Genève. 2009-09-05. Retrieved 2009-03-20.
- Sylvie Bonier (2010-01-21). "Marek Janowski quittera l’OSR en 2012". Tribune de Genève. Retrieved 2010-10-16.
- Andrew Druckenbrod (2007-08-28). "Music Review: First PSO Brahms disc strong, but not electrifying". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2009-03-15.
- Marek Janowski at AllMusic
- Marek Janowski biography at Intermusica Artists' Management agency
- Marek Janowski biography at the Pittsburgh Symphony
- Two interviews with Marek Janowski by Bruce Duffie: October 9, 1980 (mostly Wagner) and October 29, 1981 (mostly Richard Strauss)
|Music Director, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
|Kapellmeister, Gürzenich Orchestra Cologne