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Ton Koopman

Conductor

Biography

Born in Zwolle, The Netherlands, Ton Koopman had a classical education and studied organ, harpsichord, and musicology in Amsterdam, receiving the Prix d’Excellence for both instruments. Naturally attracted by historical instruments and fascinated by the philological performance style, Koopman concentrated his studies on Baroque music, with particular attention to the oeuvre of J.S. Bach and Buxtehude, and soon became a leading figure in the “historic informed performance” movement.

As organist and harpsichordist Koopman has appeared in the most prestigious concert halls of the world and played the most beautiful historical instruments of Europe. At age 25 he created his first Baroque orchestra; in 1979 he founded the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, followed in 1992 by the Amsterdam Baroque Choir. Combined as the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir, the ensemble soon gained worldwide fame. With a repertoire ranging from the early Baroque to works from the late Classical period, they have performed at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Paris’s Théâtre des Champs-Elysées and Salle Pleyel, London’s Barbican and Royal Albert Hall, Vienna’s Musikverein and Konzerthaus, Berlin’s Philharmonie, New York’s Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, Tokyo’s Suntory Hall, and others. In recent years Ton Koopman has been very active as a guest conductor, working with the most prestigious orchestras in Europe, United States, and Japan.

Among Koopman’s most ambitious projects is recording the complete Bach cantatas, for which he has been awarded the Deutsche Schallplattenpreis Echo Klassik, BBC Award, and Hector Berlioz Prize, and received nominations for Grammy and Gramophone awards. Koopman has also been an advocate of the music of Bach’s predecessor Buxtehude, recording the Complete Buxtehude — Opera Omnia, an edition comprising 30 CDs.

Koopman has recorded more than 400 CDs and LPs for the Erato, Teldec, Sony, Deutsche Grammophon and Philips labels. In 2003 he founded his own label, Antoine Marchand, a sub-label of Challenge Classics. He publishes regularly, including editing the complete Handel Organ Concertos for Breitkopf & Härtel and publishing a new edition of Handel’s Messiah and Buxtehude’s Das Jüngste Gericht for Carus-Verlag.

Ton Koopman is president of the International Dieterich Buxtehude Society, emeritus professor at the University of Leiden and Conservatory of Den Haag, honorary member of London’s Royal Academy of Music, an honorary doctor in Linz and Lübeck, and artistic director of the Festival Itinéraire Baroque.

Upcoming 2023-2024 Performances

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