The English Concert has been at the forefront of the Baroque and Classical music revival ever since its ceation by Trevor Pinnock in 1972. It now comprises many of Europe's finest baroque musicians, who together and individually have worked with leading directors for over 30 years. This unique heritage of experience and expertise is ripe for passing on to the new generation.
The English Concert Masterclass at the Foundling Museum
The first English Concert Master Class for young directors in July 2010 provided three days of intensive coaching for four young harpsichordists with ambitions to direct baroque music from the keyboard. Three days of in-depth work on a wide range of repertoire with Harry Bicket, Laurence Cummings, two solo singers and the orchestra culminated in a concert in which all the students directed The English Concert.
Conducting classes with symphony orchestras are a familiar feature of the classical music calendar, but master classes for aspiring baroque directors are few and far between, so this was an important and timely new initiative which we hope to continue in future seasons.
The Foundling Museum, with its strong musical and educational associations, superb art collection and resonant spaces, was the perfect venue for the master class.
The English Concert Masterclass was open to the public throughout.
Trinity College of Music
Between 2003 and 2007 The English Concert was the resident period ensemble at Trinity College of Music in Greenwich, giving period performance practice a central place in undergraduate and graduate studies.
All 1st and 2nd Year undergraduates were introduced to period performance through orchestral training and chamber music coaching led by members of The English Concert. These projects were concerned wtih the adaptation of period instrument style and techniques to modern instrument performance, focussing on core 18th century repertoire.
Period instruments themselves were then introduced in a series of masterclasses for violin, viola, cello, flute, oboe, trumpet, and keyboard.
Tuition on period instruments contines to be available as a follow-up to performance projects and masterclasses.
Period instrument chamber music projects were coached by members of The English Concert, focussing particularly on the works of Haydn and Mozart, and individual lessons on period instruments were made available.
Trinity College Baroque Orchestra
As a legacy of The English Concert's work, the Trinity College Baroque Orchestra is now established, giving its first public performance in 2007.