British conductor, harpsichordist, composer and editor Raymond Leppard was born in London on 11 August 1927. Whilst studying harpsichord and viola at Trinity College Cambridge he became interested in choral conducting.
He conducted his own Leppard Ensemble at London's Wigmore Hall in 1952, became associated with the Goldsbrough Orchestra (which later became the English Chamber Orchestra) and gave harpsichord recitals.
From 1958 until 1968 he lectured in music at Cambridge University, and was Director of Music at Trinity College until 1968.
He was interested in early music and made several controversial realisations of scores, including several operas by Monteverdi and Francesco Cavalli, which he then performed and which were instrumental in introducing early opera to music lovers. For his services to Italian music he was given the title of Commendatore della Republica Italiana.
He conducted Britten's Billy Budd at New York Metropolitan Opera and San Francisco Opera, and Gluck's Alceste and Handel's Alcina at New York City Opera. He conducted the first performance of Nicholas Maw's The Rising of the Moon at Glyndebourne.
He took United States nationality in 2003, and died in Indianapolis on 22 October 2019.