Combattimento Consort Amsterdam
Over the past 30 years, Combattimento Consort Amsterdam has established a strong national and international reputation. The ensemble is famous for the high quality and energy of its performances. That, together with its varied and often surprising and unfamiliar repertoire, for formations ranging from chamber ensemble to chamber orchestra, and from oratorios to operas, has made it one of the most successful Baroque ensembles in the world. The Combattimento Consort’s roughly 60 performances a year are distinguished by the originality of the ensemble’s presentation, led by one of the trend-setting conductors in Dutch musical life, Jan Willem de Vriend, who in November 2012 received the Radio 4 Prize.
The Combattimento Consort has gone on a number of tours in recent years to Germany, Spain, Central Europe, South America, Japan, Russia and the United States. It has recorded more than 35 CDs and DVDs – this year, its CD of Handel’s Concerto Grossi op. 6 will be released. The ensemble has worked with prominent soloists such as Barbara Bonney, Andreas Scholl and Sol Gabeta, Thomas Zehetmair and Sabine Meyer, as well as with the Netherlands Chamber Choir, the Nationale Reisopera and Cappella Amsterdam. The spearhead of its artistic direction is the performance of unfamiliar and as yet unpublished repertoire. Innumerable searches through libraries, churches and cloisters over the past 30 years have resulted in a notable collection of remarkable performances. In 2007, for example, Combattimento Consort Amsterdam presented Arminio, the only surviving opera of Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber. Over the years, it has developed a distinctive style of playing, which has even come to be known as the “Combattimento School” of performance. Recognizable and energetic, inventive, style-conscious and inspiring. The ensemble presents itself as a “consort”, but with the visibility of the “individual”. Jan Willem de Vriend leads the Combattimento Consort from the “first chair”, appearing as a conductor only in the larger productions (operas and oratorios). The instrumental soloists are in most cases members of the ensemble.