This ensemble, founded by Laurence Equilbey and the Conseil general des Hauts-de-Seine in 2012, has reached out beyond its homeland on the western edge of Paris to the rest of France and beyond, performing at major venues and high-profile festivals. In Hauts-de-Seine, a full range of cultural and educational initiatives has been designed, notably to foster awareness among potential audiences who have never had the opportunity to approach classical music, as well as educational and participatory projects involving young people and schools.
Insula orchestra’s artistic project is built around a repertoire ranging mainly from the Classical to the Romantic eras. Mozart, Schubert or Weber form naturally the core of this repertoire with symphonic programmes as well as programmes with choir and soloists. The orchestra plays on period instruments, working on sonority appropriate for today’s large concert halls. The founding of the orchestra relies first and foremost on an emotional and stylistic research. The musicians – gathered around a small group of renowned and experienced section leaders – are recruited among the young generation graduating from European specialised higher education institutions.
Tours led the Insula Orchestra to the Barbican London, Theater an der Wien (Mozart: Lucio Silla in concert version), Mozart Week Salzburg, Basel a major concert halls in France as Philharmonie Paris, Aix-en-Provence, Dijon, Poissy, Schloss Versailles, Festival Auvers-sur-Oise among others.
In spring 2017 the Insula Orchestra and Laurence Equilbey inaugurated the new concert hall Cité Musicale de d’Ile Seguin near Paris.
The first CD recordings include Mozart Requiem with the Choeur Accentus for Naive as well as Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice (Vienna version) with Franco Fagioli for Archiv Produktion Deutsche Grammophon. Arte has broadcasted Mozart‘s Mass C minor together with Choeur Accentus.
Founded by Laurence Equilbey for the purpose of performing the major works of the A cappella repertoire and engaging with contemporary creation, Choeur Accentus is today an ensemble of 32 professional singers which appears at leading international festivals.
The choir collaborates regularly with prestigious orchestras and conductors as Jonathan Nott, Christoph Eschenbach, Pierre Boulez, Andris Nelsons, Orchestre de Paris, Ensemble Intercontemporain, Les Siècles, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, Concerto Köln, Akademie für Alte Musik and Insula Orchestra.
Concert tours led the Choeur Accentus to the major international concert halls and renowned festivals. It has participated in a variety of operatic productions ranging from contemporary premieres to standard repertoire : Pascal Dusapin’s Perelà, l’homme de fume and Matthias Pintscher’s L’Espace dernier at the Paris Opéra, Reynaldo Hahn’s Ciboulette and Lakmé de Léo Delibes at Opéra Comique Paris, Il barbiere di Siviglia at the Festival Aix-en-Provence.
The ensemble enjoys an ongoing residence at the Opéra de Rouen and is a partner of Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, structured around the axes of a cappella concerts and programmes for choir and orchestra. In 2014/15 the Choeur Accentus has performed Haydn’s Creation and Dvořák’s Stabat Mater at the Philharmonie de Paris.
The discography of the choir includes recordings by Mendelssohn Christus, Rachmaninoff Liturgy of St. John Chrysostomus/Vesper op. 37, Richard Strauss, Fauré Requiem, Dvořák Stabat Mater, Liszt Via Crucis, Transcriptions II, Haydn The Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross, Schönberg, Brahms Ein Deutsches Requiem, Transcriptions and Mozart Requiem with the Insula Orchestra for Naive Records and Mirare Records, which were awarded with numerous prizes as Diapason d’Or, Choc de la Musique, Midem Classical Award, Victoires de la Musique Classique, ffff Télérama, Grand Prix Radio Classique de la Découverte and Liliane Bettencourt Award. Deutsche Grammophon publishes the recording of Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice with Franco Fagioli in September 2015.
Choeur Accentus is a member of the European network tenso and of FEVIS (Fédération des Ensembles Vocaux et Instrumentaux Spécialisés).Read more
Musical director of Insula Orchestra and Choeur Accentus , Laurence Equilbey is acknowledged for her demanding, yet open-minded approach to her art.
Her exploration of the symphonic repertoire has seen her conducting the Orchestre National de Lyon, Orchestre National de Lille, Strasbourg Philharmonic, Orchestre National des Pays de la Loire, Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, Brussels Philharmonic, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, MDR Leipzig Symphony/MDR Leipzig Radio Choir, BBC National Orchestra and Chorus of Wales, Camerata Salzburg, Mozarteumorchester Salzburg, Danish National Symphony, Göteborg Symphony, Oslo Philharmonic, Sinfonia Varsovia, Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Concerto Köln and Collegium Vocale Gent.
Since 2012 she is the Chief Conductor of the French Insula Orchestra with singular advancement and is regarded meanwhile as one of the most promising French conductors. Concert tours led them to the Barbican London, Theater an der Wien, Mozart Week Salzburg, to Basel and major concert houses in France. Since April 2017 Laurence Equilbey is responsible for programming about 30 concerts per season at Auditorium of La Seine Musicale at the south west side of Paris, featuring concerts of both the Insula Orchestra and international guest ensembles.
Upcoming highlights see her debuts with the Gulbenkian Orchestra and Kammerakademie Potsdam as well as tours to Poland and a concert project with Thomas Hampson.
Laurence Equilbey is also an accomplished opera conductor. Past operatic engagements comprise Mozart’s Lucio Silla (Theater an der Wien), Reynaldo Hahn’s Ciboulette (Opera Comique Paris), Britten’s Albert Herring (Opera National de Paris and Opera de Rouen Haute-Normandie), Der Freischütz (Opera de Toulon), Sous apparence (Opera de Paris), Gluck’s Orpheus und Euridice (Cite de la Musique Paris) as well as Die Zauberflöte (Opera Grand Avignon).
Her discography includes numerous award-winning recordings with choral music of Haydn, Mendelssohn, Liszt, Fauré, Mozart at Naïve und Mirare Records as well as Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice for Archiv Produktion Deutsche Grammophon, Mozart’s Requiem for Naïve, Mozart’s Coronation Mass and Schubert Lieder orchestrated by Liszt, Brahms, Strauss, Berlioz) for Erato/Warner. Erato releases the recording of the recently uncovered score of Gounod‘s Saint Francois d’Assisi.
Laurence Equilbey is also an associate artist of the Grand Théâtre de Provence Aix-en-Provence and a companion of the Cité de la Musique/Philharmonie de Paris.
She has studied music in Paris, Vienna and London, and conducting with Eric Ericson, Denise Ham, Colin Metters and Jorma Panula.
Season 2017/18Read more