The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment has today announced American conductor and harpsichordist, William Christie among their list of Emeritus conductors.
Founded in 1986, the London-based ensemble has never to date appointed a permanent Musical Director – instead preferring to extend an invitation from the orchestra’s members to multiple artistic collaborators.
“It is with great, great pleasure that we can announce that our friend and expert in French Baroque, William Christie, will be officially joining us in the role of Emeritus Conductor,” the collective have told The Violin Channel.
“We first worked with William back in 1996 and there have been many many stand-out moments since … his appointment reflects the mutual respect that has developed over the years,” the group has said.
The ethos of the British period-instrument orchestra has always been based on democracy – with a founding philosophy that the players are not simply technicians but also actively present in the artistic direction of the orchestra.
Despite the title ‘Emeritus’ often being used as an honorary accolade for an inactive person, Maestro Christie, 71 will continue regularly to lead the ensemble, the group has assured.
The orchestra’s current Principal Artists include Sir Simon Rattle, Vladimir Jurowski, Iván Fischer and Sir Mark Elder.
The ensemble’s Emeritus Conductors include Sir Roger Norrington – and the late Frans Bruggen and Sir Charles Mackerras.