Charles Hazlewood

Charles Hazlewood

Charles Hazlewood won first prize in the 1995 EBU Conducting Competition. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in 2003, his BBC Proms debut in 2006. He works regularly with great orchestras around the globe, this Season making his debut with the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Gothenburg Symphony and Malmo Symphony in Sweden, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and the Philharmonia in London. He is Music Director of the contemporary ensemble Excellent Device! and the period instrument orchestra Army of Generals.

In 2008 he founded The Charles Hazlewood All Stars at Glastonbury Festival (including Goldfrapp's Will Gregory, Portishead's Adrian Utley, Cian [Super Furry Animals] and DJ/composer Gabriel Prokofiev), an ensemble dedicated to improvisation.

Highlights with the BBC Concert Orchestra this year (with whom Hazlewood has had a close relationship for several years) have included performances at the BBC Proms, and Kurt Weill's forgotten masterpiece Lost in the Stars at London's South Bank Centre.

From 2000-7 Hazlewood was Music Director of Dimpho di Kopane in Cape Town. For them he devised the music forThe Mysteries, The Beggar's Opera, The Snow Queen (West End and worldwide), and was conductor of their feature film U Carmen e-Khayelitsha which won Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival 2005.

As part of his mission to engage the maximum number of people with music, Hazlewood has authored and conducted the music in multiple TV films, on Vivaldi, Mozart, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, and this year a landmark series for BBC2 "The Birth of British Music". He regularly performs open-heart surgery on great music with the BBC Orchestras for Radio 3's Discovering Music, and hosts The Charles Hazlewood Show on Radio 2 exploring his vast and catholic music tastes. The show has won Hazlewood 3 Sony Awards.

In August '09 Charles unveiled his latest venture, Play the Field, a new breed of orchestral festival on his farm in Somerset. It was broadcast on Radio 2 and attended by over 4,000 people. Play the Field will return in 2011.

Highlights of 2010 include the first performances from Hazlewood's brand new opera company in Johannesburg in a project based around Messiah, an ambitious year-long project injecting 21st century fire into songs from The Beggar's Opera (Roundhouse London, recording and nationwide tour), and an attempt to create the world's largest orchestra in Birmingham in October.

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