Leonhard Garms was born and grew up in Rome, Italy, in an Austrian family.
He started playing piano and organ at an early age and became interested in composition and improvisation. While still in school, he had his first conducting experiences under the guidance of Maestro Lorenzo Castriota‐Skanderbeg. He then studied conducting, accompaniment and music theory at the University of Music in Graz, Austria.
His first professional experiences while at the Conservatory led him to engagements with Graz Opera, styriarte Festival (Graz) and several other festivals and local orchestras. In 2005 he began to work as a repetiteur at Komische Oper Berlin, and in 2008 as conductor and coach at Regensburg City Opera.
In 2010 he started working freelance with various institutions, including Istanbul State Opera, Ruhrtiennale Festival, Staatstheater Wiesbaden, Opéra de Lausanne and Komische Oper Berlin. He also completed a postgraduate course in contemporary ensemble conducting with Maestro Arturo Tamayo and with the modern music academy Impuls under Klangforum Wien.
Following the invitation of Maestro Raoul Grüneis, Leonhard Garms worked at Istanbul State Opera for its 2011–12 season as conductor, coach and assistant to the general music director.
He is currently freelance again, continuing to collaborate with Istanbul and other opera houses while pursuing his interest in contemporary music with various ensembles.