Richard Egarr brings a joyful sense of adventure and a keen, enquiring mind to all his music-making. He is equally happy conducting, directing from the keyboard or playing concerti (on organ, harpsichord, fortepiano or modern piano), giving solo recitals, playing chamber-music, and indeed talking about music at every opportunity.
Music Director of the Academy of Ancient Music since 2006, Egarr has further renewed his contract to 2017. AAM began a new relationship in September 2012 as Associate Ensemble at the Barbican Centre, where plans include a cycle of Monteverdi operas. Early in his tenure Egarr established the Choir of the AAM, and operas/oratorios lie at the heart of his repertoire; in 2010 he conducted Mozart’s opera La Finta Giardiniera in concert at the Barbican Centre and the Theatre des Champs-Elysees. He made his Glyndebourne debut in 2007 conducting a staged version of The Matthew Passion. Egarr is a lasting inspiration to young musicians, maintaining regular relationships at the Amsterdam Conservatoire, Britten Pears Foundation, and the Netherlands Opera Academy (La Clemenza di Tito, Le Nozze di Figaro and Rossini’s Il Signor Bruschino) and is a Visiting Artist at the Juilliard School in New York.
Egarr was recently announced Principal Guest Conductor of the Residentie Orchestra in The Hague, having regularly guest-conducted the orchestra in recent years. Starting in September 2013 he will conduct three projects each season, with a brief to further explore eighteenth- and nineteenth-century performance practices, launching with a performance of Haydn’s Creation in December 2013.
Egarr has a flourishing career as a guest conductor with orchestras ranging from Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society where he is an annual guest, to the London Symphony, Royal Concertgebouw and Philadelphia orchestras. In 2011 he was appointed Associate Artist of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra in recognition of his growing relationship with the ensemble.
He continues to play recitals across the world, returning to the Wigmore Hall in January 2014 for a solo harpsichord recital, and in January 2013 played the Bach English Suites in London and Cambridge to coincide with his latest Harmonia Mundi release. Notable amongst an impressive discography are the Goldberg Variations and Well-Tempered Clavier, Mozart fantasias and rondos, and the complete harpsichord works of Louis Couperin, also many award winning duo recordings with Andrew Manze. His growing list of recordings directing the Academy of Ancient Music includes seven Handel discs (2007 Gramophone Award, 2009 MIDEM and Edison awards), the complete Brandenburg Concerti, and Birth of the Symphony - Handel to Haydn, the first recording released on the AAM’s own label in September 2013.
Egarr trained as a choirboy at York Minster, at Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester, and as organ scholar at Clare College Cambridge. His studies with Gustav and Marie Leonhardt further inspired his work in the field of historical performance.