Czech Ensemble Baroque Orchestra & Choir

The ensemble, dealing with historically informed performance of early music in authentic interpretation on period instruments, was founded by Roman Válek, the conductor, in 1998. The ensemble consists of three: orchestra, vocal ensemble and soloists.

The scope of the ensemble covers all genres, especially Baroque and Classicism. The members are professional instrumentalists and singers coming from the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and Germany.

The chief conductor is Roman Válek. Petr Růžička, Jana Anýžová or Josef Žák cooperate as the concertmasters and Tereza Válková as the vocal ensemble master. The cooperating musicians include e.g. Andreas Scholl, Adam Plachetka, Valer Sabadus, Emma Kirkby, Rupert Charlesworth, Chouchane Siranossian, Tamar Halperin, Krystian Adam, Richard Wiegold, Luise Haugk, Jean-François Lombard, Markéta Cukrová, Barbara Maria Willi, John Holloway, Joel Frederiksen, Jaroslav Březina, Ludmila Peterková, and many others.

The ensemble performs a repertoire consisting of cantatas, operas, concerts and symphonies, mostly from the Baroque and Classical periods.

Since September 2012, the ensemble has been realizing its own large subscription cycle of early music, BACHA NA MOZARTA!, which is the first of its kind in Moravia.

The ensemble is a resident body of the Znojmo Music Festival, where it has launched a number of Czech and world premieres of operas, chamber cantatas and orchestral concerts, for which it has been highly praised by professional critics, including 3 nominations for the Thalia Award. The ensemble has been invited to prestigious festivals (Prague Spring, Rheingau Musik Festival, Smetana´s Litomyšl, Janáček May, Mitte Europa, Days of Early Music Bratislava, Muzika Baltycka Gdaňsk, series of concerts for FOK Prague (the Prague Chamber Philharmonic), Easter Festival of Sacred Music Brno, Musica Holešov, etc.) and since 2006 it has been co-organizing the Třebíč Opera Festival.

Since 2003, Czech Ensemble Baroque has been organizing its own music workshop, the Summer School of Baroque Music (in the Holešov castle), which is designed for young professional musicians studying and dealing with early music.

The ensemble has been intensively working together with Czech Television and Radio on recording dramaturgically revealing titles (Rameau: Platée, Mysleveček: Montezuma – the world´s 1st recording, Mozart: Don Giovanni, etc.). The ensemble has recorded several projects for the major European radio WDR and NDR (Germany), it regularly records for EBU (European Broadcasting Union). In last years it has also cooperated on film productions – Margerite (2016), Interlude in Prague (2017), Maria Theresia (2017, 2019, 2021), Beethoven (2020).

The ensemble has set as its long-term artistic goal the discovery and restoration of the work of the important Czech natives F. X. Richter and F. I. Tůma. So far, the group has recorded many world premiere of their works on the Czech prestige label Supraphon. The albums were very positively received abroad – BBC 3 tip, Album of the Month by TOCCATA magazine (DE), full stars in Early Music Review magazine, nomination for Classic Prague Awards – Recording of the Year, etc.

In 2022 the CEB released its debut CD Molieri (recital by Adam Plachetka) on the prestigious Pentatone label (NE) and in 2023 it recorded an album with motets by Ignác Tůma on the French label Evidence Classic with Andreas Scholl as soloist.

In 2019, CEB made a significant impact with his production of Handel’s oratorio Saul with Andreas Scholl and Adam Palchetka in the lead roles. In 2021, he realized a European tour with a recital by Andreas Scholl and Tamar Halperin. In 2023 is performed modern scenic world premiere of Caldara’s Concordia de’ pianeti with Hana Blažíková, Valer Sabadus, Franko Klisovic, Hana Blažíková, Adam Plachetka and Andreas Scholl in the lead roles and directed by Tomáš Pilar.

In the following seasons CEB will present Vivaldi’s opera Judith Triumphans with Malena Ernman, Dagmar Šaková and Maya Amir or Handel’s Giulio Cesare with Anna Prohaska and Andreas Scholl.