Sir John Eliot Gardiner
Sir John Eliot Gardiner is revered as one of the world’s most innovative and dynamic musicians, constantly in the vanguard of enlightened interpretation and standing as a leader in contemporary musical life. His work, as founder and artistic director of the Monteverdi Choir (MC), English Baroque Soloists (EBS) and Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique (ORR), has marked him out as a key figure both in the early music revival and as a pioneer of historically informed performances.
As a regular guest of the world’s leading symphony orchestras, such as the London Symphony Orchestra, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam and Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Gardiner conducts repertoire from the 17th to the 20th century. He was awarded the Concertgebouw Prize in January 2016.
The extent of Gardiner’s repertoire is illustrated in the extensive catalogue of award-winning recordings with his own ensembles and leading orchestras including the Vienna Philharmonic on major labels (including Decca, Philips, Erato and 30 recordings for Deutsche Grammophon), as wide-ranging as Mozart, Schumann, Berlioz, Elgar and Kurt Weill, in addition to works by Renaissance and Baroque composers.
Since 2005 the Monteverdi ensembles have recorded on their independent label, Soli Deo Gloria, established to release the live recordings made during Gardiner’s Bach Cantata Pilgrimage in 2000, for which he received Gramophone’s 2011 Special Achievement Award and a Diapason d’Or de l’année in 2012. His many recording accolades include two GRAMMY awards and he has received more Gramophone Awards than any other living artist.
Gardiner has also conducted opera productions; at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, at the Vienna State Opera and at Teatro alla Scala, Milan. From 1983 to 1988 he was artistic director of Opéra de Lyon, where he founded its new orchestra. Following the success in 2008 of Verdi “Simon Boccanegra” at the Royal Opera House, Gardiner returned there in 2012 to conduct Verdi “Rigoletto”, and in 2013 Mozart “Le nozze di Figaro”, to coincide with the 40th anniversary since his ROH debut. In autumn 2015, he returned to ROH to conduct Gluck “Orphée et Eurydice”, with the MC and EBS, co-directed by Hofesh Shechter and John Fulljames.
An authority on the music of J S Bach, Gardiner’s book, “Music in the Castle of Heaven: A Portrait of Johann Sebastian Bach”, was published in October 2013 by Allen Lane, leading to the Prix des Muses award (Singer-Polignac). Among numerous awards in recognition of his work, Sir John Eliot Gardiner holds several honorary doctorates. He was awarded a knighthood for his services to music in the 1998 Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
In 2017 Gardiner and the Monteverdi ensembles celebrated the 450th anniversary of Monteverdi’s birth with staged performances of his three surviving operas across Europe and in the USA, a project that was awarded an RPS Music Award in the Opera and Music Theatre category. Recent recordings include two Bach releases with SDG, “Magnificat” in E Flat and “St Matthew Passion” along with LSO recording of Mendelssohn Symphony No 2 (“Lobgesang”).
As of July 2019