Andrew Parrott, 2014

A former Music Director of the London Mozart Players and of the New York Collegium, British conductor Andrew Parrott’s exploration of the classical repertoire has included productions of operas by Haydn, Gluck and Mozart (six of them for Toronto’s Opera Atelier) and the recording of all Beethoven’s works for piano and orchestra (with Ronald Brautigam for BIS).

From the outset new music has also played an important part in Andrew Parrott’s wide-ranging musical life. He was an assistant to composer Michael Tippett for several years and a member of the vocal quartet Electric Phoenix, and has conducted major orchestral and choral works by Stravinsky and Judith Weir at the BBC Proms. The latter’s opera, A Night at the Chinese Opera, was premiered (and later recorded) by him, as were works by other British composers and by Slovakia’s Vladimír Godár.

Andrew Parrott is perhaps best known though for his pioneering work in pre-classical repertory (from medieval music to Handel), notably in performances with his own Taverner Consort, Choir & Players, who have also made 60 or so recordings together – including his own première reconstruction of Bach’s lost Trauer-Music for Prince Leopold (2011), Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo (2013) and Taverner’s Western Wind mass (2016; Gramophone Award). A graduate of Oxford University, he has always been involved in related musicological research and has published two challenging books, The Essential Bach Choir (2000) and Composers’ Intentions? (2015); a third is currently inching towards completion.