As Radio 3’s Baroque Spring Season draws to a close Tom Service explores the changes in the performance and perception of Baroque music over the last 50 years. From the Dutch and British pioneers of the early music movement in the 1960s, through to today, historically informed performance practice has grown from a small band of devotees to a movement which now influences how every professional ensemble approaches the Baroque repertoire.
Tom talks to three conductors who helped change the course of musical history – Christopher Hogwood founder of The Academy of Ancient Music, Reinhard Goebel who set up Musiqua Antiqua Koln in Germany, and Sir Roger Norrington who created the Schutz Choir and the London Classical Players – about their journey of discovery and the controversies they’ve encountered along the way, about why the movement was essential, and what its impact has been. And Nicholas Kenyon, one of the early music movement’s most acute observers’, discusses how the wider musical world has reacted to the seismic shift brought on by period performance.
Plus contributions from soprano Emma Kirkby and conductors William Christie, René Jacobs, Ton Koopman and Nikolaus Harnoncourt.