Conductor John Eliot Gardiner has been appointed the Harvard Music Department’s inaugural Christoph Wolff Distinguished Visiting Scholar in the Music Department, supported by the Christoph Wolff Fund for Music. Gardiner—an English conductor, early music expert, and Bach biographer—is on campus to participate in a series of events February 2-8, including an open rehearsal with Harvard choral groups (Saturday, Feb. 7, at 4:30 p.m. in Memorial Church), and an informal rehearsal with the Harvard Radcliffe Orchestra and pianist Robert Levin (Sunday, February 8, at 8 p.m. in Sanders Theatre). The events are free and open to the public. There are no tickets required; seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Gardiner is one of the fathers of the period-instrument movement and the founder of some of its most iconic ensembles — the Monteverdi Choir, the English Baroque Soloists, and the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique. He has recorded over 250 albums with these and other musical ensembles. Gardiner has served as chief conductor of the North German Radio Symphony Orchestra and has appeared as guest conductor with such major orchestras as the Berlin Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and Vienna Philharmonic.
Gardiner is a Commander of the Order of the British Empire and Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur. He received Grammy Awards for Best Choral Performance (1994) and Best Opera Recording (1999).