Les Arts Florissants
Les Arts Florissants © Denis Rouvre
The ensemble Les Arts Florissants was founded in 1979. Its name comes from an opera by Marc-Antoine Charpentier. The artistic director since the beginning has been the harpsichordist and conductor William Christie; he is assisted by Paul Agnew, who was appointed Musical Co-Director in 2019. The ensemble has unearthed numerous forgotten works from the treasure troves of the Bibliothèque nationale de France, bringing them back into the repertoire: not just compositions from the French grand siècle but from 17th- and 18th-century European music in general. Since their operatic debut with Lully’s Atys, which took place at the Opéra Comique in Paris in 1987, Les Arts Florissants have devoted themselves intensively to music theater. They perform around 100 times each season, most notably at the Paris Philharmonie, the Théâtre de Caen, the Paris Opéra Comique, the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, and the Palace of Versailles, as well as in New York, London, Edinburgh, Brussels, Vienna, Salzburg, Madrid, Barcelona, and Moscow. Since 2012, the ensemble has presented the festival Dans les Jardins de William Christie. Through the vocal academy Le Jardin des Voix and the program The Arts Flo Juniors, it is dedicated to cultivating highly talented young musicians. Les Arts Florissants is supported by the French State, the Direction régionale des affaires culturelles des Pays de la Loire, the Département de la Vendée, and the Region Pays de la Loire. In residence at the Philharmonie de Paris, they are "Centre Culturel de Rencontre". The Selz Foundation and American Friends of Les Arts Florissants are sponsors.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 27 August 1996 in works by Sigismondo d’India and Claudio Monteverdi conducted by William Christie.