02 May 2024

Arcangelo joins London Handel Festival as Principal Ensemble in Residence

The London Handel Festival has announced the appointment of Arcangelo as its first-ever Principal Ensemble in Residence.

First published 2 May 2024

The London Handel Festival has announced the appointment of Arcangelo as its first-ever Principal Ensemble in Residence. 

Beginning in 2025, Arcangelo will take up residence at the London Handel Festival and its Artistic Director Jonathan Cohen will separately join the Festival as Artistic Adviser, working alongside Festival Director, Gregory Batsleer. 

As Principal Ensemble in Residence, Arcangelo will be integral to the Festival’s artistic identity, performing a number of concerts throughout each Festival. Their involvement will include a flagship performance of a major work, a chamber recital with prominent international soloists, as well as a commitment to showcasing emerging talents through an annual recital with members of its Arcangelo New Ensemblists programme.

Jonathan Cohen, founder and Artistic Director of Arcangelo, will work with Festival Director Gregory Batsleer to further elevate the Festival’s artistic vision and strengthen its position as a leading international centre for the greatest performances of Handel’s music.  

Gregory Batsleer, Festival Director, London Handel Festival, said: 

“This is an exciting time for the London Handel Festival. The 2024 season has been our best yet. I am particularly excited we’re now able to announce this major new collaboration for the Festival.  Working with artists with the reputation of Jonathan and Arcangelo ensures that the London Handel Festival places world-class music-making right at the heart of its programming. I’ve no doubt that together we will continue to enhance the Festival’s reputation as the globally recognised destination for the finest performances of Handel’s music.”

Jonathan Cohen, Arcangelo Artistic Director, said:

“I am delighted to open this new chapter for Arcangelo at the London Handel Festival, and at the opportunities it brings to champion more of Handel’s endlessly glorious music with great musicians and artists. I am looking forward to working with Greg and the LHF team, and to everything that we can achieve together to carry forward all of Laurence’s superb and dedicated work with the LHO and so many musicians over the years.”

Following on from the much-acclaimed 2024 festival, this new artistic collaboration highlights the London Handel Festival’s ongoing commitment to promoting unique and world-class performances of Handel’s music from the heart of Handel’s London, and positions the Festival as the premier destination for the finest Handel performances. These new appointments follow on from Laurence Cummings’ recent departure after a remarkable 25-year tenure as the Festival’s Musical Director. 

Arcangelo’s position as Principal Ensemble in Residence will head a growing international portfolio of guest artists and ensembles performing at the London Handel Festival including the London Handel Orchestra who remain a key part of the Festival. This new artistic initiative aligns with broader Festival developments, including the expansion of its Opera Studio and the recent launch of a year-round Creative Learning programme.

Sir Nicholas Kenyon, Chair, Arcangelo, said: 

“This is a great moment: Handel’s powerful music is ever more central to our cultural lives, and it is ideal that two organisations with such a commitment to musical excellence are now coming together. Arcangelo looks forward to working with the London Handel Festival as we take Handel’s music to increasingly wide audiences.”  

Richard Hopkin, Chair, London Handel Festival, said: 

“Following on from our much-acclaimed 2024 Festival, this major new collaboration is great news for the Festival and for the music of Handel. Hosting yet more first-class talent at the Festival confirms our growing ambitions and I am looking forward to new and invigorating interpretations of Handel’s works in the coming years.”

Details of Arcangelo’s first London Handel Festival performances will be announced later in the year as part of the London Handel Festival’s full 2025 Festival announcement.

Futher information

For further information about this press release please contact Julian Forbes, Arcangelo General Manager: julian@arcangelo.org.uk 

For further information about the London Handel Festival please visit: https://www.london-handel-festival.com/