English conductor, editor, harpsichordist, musicologist and writer Christopher Hogwood was born in Nottingham on 10 September 1941. After music and classical literature at Cambridge, he studied performance and conducting with Thurston Dart, Raymond Leppard, Mary Potts, Rafael Puyana, Gustav Leonhardt and Zuzana Ruzickova.
With David Munrow, Hogwood founded the Early Music Consort in 1967, but this was disbanded in 1976 after Munrow's death. Hogwood also founded the Academy of Ancient Music in 1973, remaining music director until 2006, and continued to perform and record with the group until 2013, with more than two hundred recordings on Decca. Once described as the 'Von Karajan of Early Music', Christopher Hogwood later expanded into other areas, conducting opera from 1983 onwards, including Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress in Madrid in 2009, and also concentrated on the music of Britten, Copland, Honegger, Martinu and Tippett.
Hogwood was artistic director of the Mostly Mozart Festival (Barbican Centre, London, 1983-5). He conducted regularly in the USA from 1981, and was artistic director of the Boston Handel and Haydn Society from 1986 until 2001 and then conductor laureate for the rest of his life. He was also musical director of Minnesota's St Paul Chamber Orchestra (1988-92).
Much honoured, Hogwood was appointed CBE in 1989, was awarded the University of California's Award for Artistic Excellence in 1996, received the Handel Prize from the city of Halle in 2008 and the Beijing Music Festival's Artist of the Year award in 2010. He had professorships at Cambridge, the Royal Academy of Music and King's College London, Gresham College London and Cornell University.
Christopher Hogwood died in Cambridge on 24 September 2014, aged seventy three, following an illness lasting several months.
Ensemble. Invigorating Performance - Sinfonia Viva plays Judith Weir, heard by Mike Wheeler
Record Box. Full and Resonant - Violin concertos by Bohuslav Martinu, reviewed by Patric Standford
CD Spotlight. Amazing Confidence - Concertos by Handel, reviewed by Robert Hugill. '... the playing here is some of the most incisive that I have heard ...'
Irresistible Momentum - Alexander Shelley at Sinfonia Viva's helm, reviewed by Mike Wheeler