Acknowledged as one of the finest orchestras in the world, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe (COE) was founded in 1981 by a group of young musicians graduating from the European Union Youth Orchestra. It was their ambition to make music together at the highest possible professional level, and of that original group, 18 remain in the current core membership of 50. With inspired performances and European diversity at its heart, and representing 15 nationalities living in 12 European countries.
The current concert season continues to be as challenging and exciting as ever, and as always the Orchestra is very happy to be here in Graz for the styriarte Festival where it is privileged to perform every year and to be reunited with Nikolaus Harnoncourt. It has recently completed a European tour presenting the first three Beethoven piano concertos with Pierre-Laurent Aimard, and together they will soon be travelling to New York for the Mostly Mozart Festival.
Other recent engagements across Europe and in the USA have taken place with Vladimir Ashkenazy, Lisa Batiashvili and many other artists.
Important partnerships with some of the most prominent concert halls in Europe such as the Royal Festival Hall in London, the Cité de la Musique in Paris and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam have all contributed to a full diary for the foreseeable future. The COE is honoured to have a close association with the Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon, to appear regularly at the festivals in Lucerne, and to have strong links with the concert halls all over Europe.
Renowned not only for its memorable performances but also for the quality of its recordings, the COE has won many international prizes for its wide repertoire. It is proud of its three Gramophone „Record of the Year“ awards, its 2004 Grammy Award, and its MIDEM 2008 „Classical Download” Award. Great critical acclaim has also been awarded to the COE’s latest recordings which include the Thomas Ades Violin Concerto and the Mendelssohn and Bach violin concertos with Daniel Hope, as well as a CD on Linn Records of Stravinsky’s Pulcinella Suite and Apollon Musagete directed by Alexander Janiczek.
Now in its 30th year, the Orchestra continues to enjoy many exciting challenges, performing again in 2010 with Thomas Ades, Lisa Batiashvili, Joshua Bell, Ivan Fischer, Daniel Hope, Janine Jansen, Vladimir Jurowski, Anthony Marwood, Yannick Nezet-Seguin, Maria Joao Pires and Andràs Schiff. The COE will return to the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York with Pierre-Laurent Aimard, perform at the styriarte Festival in Graz with Nikolaus Harnoncourt, and at the Lucerne Piano Festival with Bernard Haitink and Emanuel Ax. And for the first time, the COE is working this year with Julia Fischer, Rolf Hind, John Nelson, Sakari Oramo and Trevor Pinnock. In 2007, the COE was appointed one of the European Union’s „Cultural Ambassadors”, and as a result now benefits from invaluable EU support. Over recent years the Orchestra has also received significant financial support from The Gatsby Charitable Foundation.
The Chamber Orchestra of Europe is supported by the European Union Culture Programme.
The COE is supported by The Gatsby Charitable Foundation.