Les Siècles

© Ansgar Klostermann

Les Siècles, formed in the summer of 2003 by François-Xavier Roth, comprises outstanding young players pooled from the very finest French ensembles. Roth’s founding ambition was for his orchestra to offer a new approach, not only to repertoire but also to the nature of the concert form.

With a vast period-instrument collection at its disposal, spanning the baroque, classical, romantic and modern eras, the orchestra’s repertoire is notably wide in range. Les Siècles is one of a small number of ensembles to employ period and modern instruments, often in the same concert. Its flexible and historically informed work delivers a unique strand of creative programming.

François-Xavier Roth and the musicians of Les Siècles have made a distinctive mark at home and abroad, presenting an orchestra for the 21st century. Les Siècles appears regularly on the international stage –

Paris (Philharmonie, Opéra-Comique), La Côte Saint-André and Aix-en-Provence Festivals, London (BBC Proms, Royal Festival Hall), Amsterdam (Concertgebouw), Berlin (Konzerthaus), Bremen (Bremen Festival), Bonn (Beethovenfest), Cologne, Brussels (Klara Festival), Luxembourg, Monte Carlo (Printemps des Arts), Granada (Granada Festival), Bucharest (Enescu Festival), Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Tokyo. In 2018, the orchestra undertook a tour to China and Japan including danced performances of Nijinsky ballets. The orchestra is an Associate Artist of the Philharmonie de Paris and the Cité de la Musique in Soissons and has a residency in the département of l’Aisne.

In this celebratory year, the orchestra includes a focus on the works of Berlioz alongside programmes featuring Mozart, Beethoven, Lachenmann and Ligeti

The orchestra’s recordings of Stravinsky's three ballets (The Firebird, Petrushka and The Rite of Spring) received a German Record Critics’ Prize and an Edison Klassiek Prize in the Netherlands. Les Siècles first album of a complete cycle of Ravel’s orchestral works for Harmonia Mundi, Daphnis & Chloé won the Gramophone Awards Orchestral Album of the Year 2018. The second release, including Ma mère l’Oye, won a Diapason d’Or. Mirages, a vocal recital with Sabine Devieilhe for Erato, was winner of a Diapason d’Or and Victoires de la Musique Classique Recording of the Year, a Gramophone Editor’s Choice and Sunday Times Album of the Week. An album commemorating Debussy’s centenary year, including Jeux and Nocturnes was one of the Sunday Times Top 100 recordings of the year and Presto Classical Disc of the Year. Their latest recording, commemorating the 150th anniversary of Berlioz’ death, includes Harold en Italie (Tabea Zimmermann) and Les nuits d’été (Stéphane Degout). It was Sunday Times Album of the Week and acclaimed by Dutch newspaper Trouw as “already one of the best CDs of the year”

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