Giovanni Antonini
Artistic Director of Wratislavia Cantans

Born in Milan, Giovanni Antonini studied at the Civica Scuola di Musica and at the Centre de Musique Ancienne in Geneva. He is a founder member of the Baroque ensemble Il Giardino Armonico, which he has led since 1989. With this ensemble, he has appeared as conductor and soloist on the recorder and Baroque transverse flute in Europe, the United States, Canada, South America, Australia, Japan, and Malaysia. He is Artistic Director of the Wratislavia Cantans International Festival in Poland and Principal Guest Conductor of the Mozarteumorchester Salzburg and Kammerorchester Basel.

He has performed with many prestigious artists including Cecilia Bartoli, Kristian Bezuidenhout, Giuliano Carmignola, Isabelle Faust, Sol Gabetta, Sumi Jo, Viktoria Mullova, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Emmanuel Pahud, and Giovanni Sollima. Renowned for his refined and innovative interpretation of the Classic and Baroque repertoire, Antonini is also a regular guest with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, London Symphony Orchestra, and Chicago Symphony Orchestra. His opera productions have included Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro and Handel’s Alcina at Teatro alla Scala in Milano and Opernhaus Zürich, Handel’s Giulio Cesare and Bellini’s Norma with Cecilia Bartoli at the Salzburg Festival. In 2018, he returned to Opernhaus Zürich for Mozart’s Idomeneo. In the 2018/19 season, performances include debuts with the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra (soloists Viktoria Mullova & Avi Avital) and Czech Philharmonic, return visits to Kammerorchester Basel for concert performances of Beethoven’s Fidelio and Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment for Mozart’s symphonies and Gluck & Mozart arias with Magdalena Kožená, as well as Handel’s Orlando at Theater an der Wien.

With Il Giardino Armonico, Antonini has recorded numerous CDs of instrumental works by Vivaldi as part of his wider recorded repertoire of 17th and 18th century Italian composers, J. S. Bach (Brandenburg Concertos), as well as Biber and Locke for Teldec. With Naïve he recorded Vivaldi’s opera Ottone in villa, and in the recent years he has been recording with Il Giardino Armonico for Decca, including Alleluia with Julia Lezhneva. With the Kammerorchester Basel he has recorded Beethoven’s symphonies and most recently a disc of flute concertos with Emmanuel Pahud entitled Revolution. In 2013, he conducted a recording of Bellini’s Norma for Decca in collaboration with Orchestra La Scintilla. Giovanni Antonini is Artistic Director of the ‘Haydn2032’ project, created to realise a vision to record and perform with Il Giardino Armonico and Kammerochester Basel, the complete symphonies of Joseph Haydn by the 300th anniversary of the composer’s birth. Volumes 1-6 have been released on the Alpha Classics label with two further volumes planned for release each year in the future.


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