The ensemble Il Pomo d’Oro was founded in 2012. It is characterized by an authentic, dynamic interpretation of operas and instrumental works from the Baroque and Classical periods. The musicians are all well-known specialists and are among the best in the field of historical performance practice. To date, the ensemble has worked with conductors Riccardo Mihasnasi, Maxim Emelyanychev, Stefano Montanari, George Petrou, Enrico Onofri, and Francesco Corti. Concertmaster Zefira Valova also leads the orchestra in various projects. Since 2016, Maxim Emelyanychev has been its chief conductor, and since 2019, Francesco Corti has been principal guest conductor.
Il Pomo d’Oro is a regular guest in prestigious concert halls and festivals all over Europe. After the worldwide success of the program In War and Peace with Joyce DiDonato, in 2020 Il Pomo d’Oro and Maxim Emelyanychev presented My Favorite Things with the singer; it is now on tour worldwide with EDEN, the latest program and album of Il Pomo d’Oro, Maxim Emelyanychev, and the American mezzo-soprano.
The discography of Il Pomo d’Oro includes a wide range of opera recordings including works by Handel, Vinci, and Stradella; recitals with the countertenors Jakub Józef Orliński, Franco Fagioli, Max Emanuel Cencic, and Xavier Sabata, mezzo-sopranos Ann Hallenberg and Joyce DiDonato, and sopranos Lisette Oropesa, Emöke Barath, and Francesca Aspromonte. Instrumental albums include Haydn’s violin and harpsichord concertos as well as a cello album with Edgar Moreau. Other instrumental recordings are dedicated to the violin and harpsichord concertos by J.S. Bach, with Shunske Sato and Francesco Corti as soloists, and to virtuoso violin concertos with Dmitry Sinkonvsky.
In 2021, new albums featured Bach harpsichord concertos with Francesco Corti; Ombra Compagna (Mozart concert arias) with Lisette Oropesa; and Anima Aeterna with Jakub Józef Orliński. Albums in 2022 included Handel’s Apollo e Dafne with soprano Kathryn Lewek and bass John Chest; Mandolin on Stage with Raffaele La Ragione; Joyce DiDonato’s EDEN; and Handel’s Theodora with a stellar cast (Lisette Oropesa, Joyce DiDonato, Paul-Antoine Bénos-Djian, Michael Spyres, John Chest), which also introduced Il Pomo d’Oro’s new vocal ensemble.
In 2022, the group also started a long-term recording project of Mozart symphonies and selected solo concerts with Maxim Emelyanychev conducting.
Il Pomo d’Oro is official ambassador of El Sistema Greece, a humanitarian project dedicated to providing free musical education to children in Greek refugee camps. The group plays charity concerts and offers workshops and music lessons according to the El Sistema method on a frequent regular basis.
The name of the ensemble refers to Antonio Cesti’s opera from the year 1666. Composed for the wedding celebration of Emperor Leopold I and Margarita Teresa of Spain, Il Pomo d’Oro was probably one of the largest, most expensive, and most spectacular opera productions in the still young history of the genre; it featured 24 different stage designs, a horse ballet with 300 horses, a fireworks display of 73,000 rockets, and numerous special effects.
For more information, please visit the orchestra’s website at www.ilpomodoro.org.