Brecon Baroque

The collective sense of style shown by Podger and her ensemble produces music making of inspiring vitality...

International Record Review

This is the most effervescent, zingy Bach Double Concerto I’ve heard.

The Arts Desk

Brecon Baroque

Director: Rachel Podger

The dynamic ensemble Brecon Baroque was founded in 2007 by violinist and director Rachel Podger as resident ensemble at her annual Brecon Baroque Festival. The international line-up consists of some of some of the leading lights in the period-instrument world, such as cellist Alison McGillivray, flautist Katy Bircher, oboist Alexandra Bellamy and violist Jane Rogers, as well as some of Rachel's former students who now occupy leading positions in many of Europe's finest ensembles: violinists Bojan Cicic and Johannes Pramsohler.

Brecon Baroque specialises in the music of J.S. Bach and his contemporaries, mostly as a one-to-a-part ensemble based on the Cafe Zimmerman ensemble which Bach himself directed. They also appear as a small baroque orchestra for Vivaldi, Telemann, Purcell and Handel.

Over the last five years, the ensemble has performed all of Bach's Cantatas for solo soprano with Elin Manahan Thomas. Brecon Baroque is in demand at home and abroad: the 2012-2013 season has seen the ensemble perform at the St Alban’s International Organ festival and the Stour festival as well as giving concerts across Europe and Japan, while plans for the 2013-14 season will see them appear across the UK and Europe, including performances of Vivaldi’s L’Estro Armonico concertos in the Netherlands and the UK, a sparkling Christmas programme for the York Early Music Christmas Festival and a UK tour of Mid Wales Opera's Acis and Galatea in a new collaboration with the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

In 2010 Rachel and Brecon Baroque recorded Bach's Violin Concertos for Channel Classics. This debut CD attracted universal critical acclaim and was quickly hailed as a bench-mark recording of these works. Following this, in 2013, their recording of Bach’s Double and Triple Concertos was released on the same label, and has been showered with praise, including being nominated CD of the week for Classic FM, BBC Radio 3 CD Review, HR2 Kultur (Germany) and WQXR (New York). Future recording plans include Vivaldi's L'Estro Armonico concertos, as well as more Bach.

This biography is for information only, and should not be re-printed. Please use the link below to download the version for concert programmes.

Download 2014-15 Biography (.docx)

Download 2014-15 Publicity Photo (.jpg) - Credit: K.Miura