London Handel Orchestra


Joining the talent of some of London’s finest Baroque instrumentalists, the orchestra was formed in order to participate in the effort of reviving Baroque music, which had suffered neglect on the UK’s musical scene for some time. The ensemble brought less known musical pieces to public awareness, which in its initial phase was its main focus. Today it is recognised as a well-organised, passionate group with a dedication to authenticity, managing to revive the spirit of bygone times with every performance. The orchestra is not exclusively focused on Handel’s compositions but also that of his contemporaries.


The beginnings of this orchestra can be traced back to 1981, when the ensemble itself as well as the Handel Choir debuted by performing at the London Handel Festival. The festival itself had been taking place for a few years, as it had been established by Denys Darlow in 1978. The festival constituted an opportunity for many emerging talents as well as accomplished instrumentalists to celebrate Handel’s music and re-acquaint audiences with its ineffable qualities. The London Handel Orchestra has supported this effort not only through captivating performances but through educational initiatives as well, engaging the young generations in projects connected to this specific type of classical music. The ensemble’s current Musical Directors, are Laurence Cummings (since 1999), who has been involved with this project from the very beginning, and Adrian Butterfield.

Performances and recordings

The London Handel Festival involves performances in a variety of prestigious locations, such as Windsor Castle, the Royal Academy of Music, St George’s Chapel and of course, Handel’s Church. Besides taking part in this major annual event, the London Handel Orchestra participates in other events such as the Windsor Festival or the Three Choirs Festival, as well as giving live performances in other locations across the country.