"The best of London's authentic chamber orchestras" The Sunday
"Inspirational performances" The Independent
The English Concert was founded by Trevor Pinnock in 1973. They have
together established a world-wide reputation for the expressive vitality
and technical quality of their music-making, and have for many years
been amongst Britain's leading period instrument ensembles. The English
Concert promotes its own series of concerts in London and is also in
great demand overseas. Last year the orchestra with its own choir gave
eighteen performances of J.S. Bach's St. Matthew Passion, starting in
the Canary Islands in January 2000 and finishing with a tour in Japan
in October. Further afield the orchestra has recently undertaken highly
successful tours in the USA and South America, in addition to the Japan
tour earlier in the 2000/01 season. The current season culminates in
June with nine performances of Handel's opera Tamerlano. This important
new production, directed by Jonathan Miller, will be performed in London
(at Sadlers Wells Theatre), in Paris (at the Théatre des Champs
Elysées) and in Handel's birthplace Halle. Click here
for more details.
Trevor Pinnock and The English Concert are among the most recorded musicians
in the world but above all it is the obvious pleasure which the musicians
derive from playing together on concert platforms which generates a
special rapport with audiences throughout the world.
Trevor Pinnock has written: "I am often asked, "What made The English
Concert decide to play on period instruments?" The answer is simple
- we wanted to use the most suitable tools for the job. These instruments
were good enough for Bach - surely they must be good enough for us.
Together we set out to rediscover and develop lost playing techniques
in order to reveal the special colours and expressive qualities of the
period instruments, and gradually they revealed their secrets, shedding
new light on the music. Even the most frequently heard compositions
were refreshed by their clarity and blend. The historical aspect is
interesting, but history has little place on the concert platform. For
us as musicians, the instruments have gone beyond history to become
a natural part of our musical expression."
The English Concert reaches an even wider international audience through
its best-selling recordings on Deutsche Grammophon's Archiv label. There
are over 70 recordings, many of which have won major prizes including
international Gramophone awards and Grand Prix du Disc.