Sir John Eliot Gardiner

April 20, 1943 - Fontmell (England)

© Fred Toulet

Sir John Eliot Gardiner is one of the most versatile conductors of our time. Acknowledged as a key figure in the early music revival, he is the founder and artistic director of the Monteverdi Choir, the English Baroque Soloistsand the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique. Alongside the activities with his own ensembles, John Eliot Gardiner appears regularly as guest conductor with the most important European symphony orchestras, including the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonic orchestras and the London Symphony Orchestra.

The extent of John Eliot Gardiner’s repertoire is illustrated in over 250 recordings made for major European record companies (principally Deutsche Grammophon and Philips Classics), which have received numerous international awards. Over the years Gardiner has won more Gramophone awards than any other artist. Recordings include the six late masses by Haydn as well as the Santiago a Cappella CD, released on Emarcy to coincide with his Santiago Pilgrimage tour in summer 2004. Most recently he has released recordings of the Bach Cantatas from the Bach Pilgrimage tour of 2000, on his own record label Soli Deo Gloria. The first release was awarded Gramophone Record of the year in 2005.

In February 2007, Sir John Eliot Gardiner was the subject of a 'Domaine Privé' at Cité de la musique in Paris, a week-long series of events focusing on the music of Rameau and his contemporaries. These included concert performances of Rameau's Castor and Pollux and an exciting collaboration with Buskaid and the Roussat-Lubek dance company which was recently repeated at the BBC Proms.

In 2007 he began an ambitious project which will conclude in autumn 2008 involving twenty-eight performances of five Brahms-based programmes with the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique and the Monteverdi Choir. December 2007 saw the start of an exciting collaboration between the Monteverdi and Opéra Comique, Paris: John Eliot Gardiner conducted the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique and the Monteverdi Choirin eight fully-staged performances of Emmanuel Chabrier's Opera bouffe, L'Étoile; he returned to the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in May 2008 to conduct Simon Boccanegra.

John Eliot Gardiner has recently begun a three-year Beethoven cycle with the London Symphony Orchestra and has also made guest appearances with the Czech Philharmonic and Chicago Symphony Orchestras.

In 1987 John Eliot Gardiner received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Lyon, and in 1996 he was nominated Commandeur dans l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. In 1992 he became an Honorary Fellow of both King's College, London, and the Royal Academy of Music. He received a knighthood in the 1998 Queen's Birthday Honours List.

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