Artists · Orchestras · Concerto Copenhagen
The orchestra performed it's first concerts in 1991 and has since developed into Scandinavia's leading period instruments ensemble and a young member of the World's most interesting and innovative Baroque Orchestras.
Concerto Copenhagen distinguishes itself by its original interpretations and a marked talent for communicating with the audience. Concerto Copenhagen recreates the vitality and presence of ancient music and brings it up to date.
In 1999, the internationally renowned Lars Ulrik Mortensen became artistic director of the ensemble. In recognition of his stature as one of the world's leading harpsichordists and chamber music players, he was awarded the coveted Léonie Sonning Prize in 2007. The encounter between Concerto Copenhagen and Mortensen was the prelude to an exciting artistic and musical journey, enabling the ensemble to combine a repertoire of well-known European music with less familiar works of Scandinavian and other origin.
Through the years Concerto Copenhagen has cooperated with many internationally renowned artists on the Early Music scene: Emma Kirkby, Andreas Scholl, Anne Sofie von Otter, Andrew Manze, Reinhard Goebel, Ronald Brautigam and Andrew Lawrence-King, who is the orchestra's Principal Guest Conductor.
Concerto Copenhagen's CD recordings for the German label cpo, for Deutsche Grammophon and for BIS have attracted international attention and won several prestigious prizes. This in turn has opened the doors to many of Europe's leading concert venues, guest appearances at top international festivals and tours in Europe, the USA, Japan and Australia. Foreign critics have placed Concerto Copenhagen in the first rank of international orchestras.
In Denmark, the prime partner is the Royal Theatre, where Concerto Copenhagen performs in about one opera a year. Recent productions include works by Monteverdi and Mozart as well as Handel's Xerxes, Giulio Cesare and Partenope, the latter two featuring the counter tenor Andreas Scholl in leading roles.
Concerto Copenhagen's concerts are recorded and broadcast by Danmarks Radio (DR) and by the EBU network in most parts of the world.
"This must be one of the fastest four hours I have sat through. At its heart was Concerto Copenhagen, a smaller orchestra than that fielded by the Gabrieli Consort the previous evening for Haydn’s The Creation, but producing a bigger, better integrated sound, ... with the kind of freedom and flexibility you wish other so-called period specialists could emulate. The reading had presence, momentum, dramatic flair, but it wasn’t a performance where one person was seen to be imposing a style. It was, instead, a most wonderful co-ordination and harmonising of talents."
Andrew Clark, Financiel Times, 20 July 2009, Parthenope, Royal Albert Hall, BBC Proms
"The conducting gestures of the American Kenneth Weiss, with his back to the audience so as to better lead his musicians, as the same time as playing both harpsichord and organ, are super-active, communicating with unbridled gusto, bringing out each inflexion and accentuation... His sense of detail is obvious, yet never does this sacrifice the power and surging of the progression of the overall structure. He knows how to impose a palpitating, vigorous tempo from the first note and raises this Handel Passion, dating from his Italian period, a work that is decisive but still relatively unknown, to hitherto unknow heights."
ClassiqueNews.com, Concerto Copenhagen, Brockes Passion, Festival de Cuenca, April 2009
Photo Francesco Galli