Baroque opera, orchestral & ensemble director, imaginative continuo-player, Early Harp virtuoso, specialist in baroque gesture & Historical Action, investigator of Flow, Andrew Lawrence-King is the doyen of historical harping, one of the world’s leading performers of Early Music, and an internationally renowned scholar.
His pioneering recordings of Trabaci, Ribayaz, Handel and Carolan re-established the lost worlds of Italian, Spanish, Anglo-Welsh & Irish baroque harps; as co-director of Tragicomedia and director of The Harp Consort, he led a revolution in improvisation & continuo-playing; his research into Tactus has redefined our understanding of baroque rhythm; as guest director, he inspires musicians around the world to reach new levels of technical precision and stylish historicity with fun, energy and passion.
Andrew has directed at La Scala, Milan & Sydney Opera House and won Russia's highest theatrical award, the Golden Mask (2012) for Cavalieri’s 'Anima & Corpo'. His direction of Handel’s 'Orlando' (2019) won the Russian Eugene Onegin Award and has been nominated for another Golden Mask. During his long collaboration with Jordi Savall, he has won a Grammy (best ensemble 2011), the Spanish Premio de la Música in duet (2010) & trio (2011), and Australia’s Helpmann Award in duet (2013) & ensemble (2018). His recording of 'Earthly Angels' with soprano Kajsa Dahlbäck was YLE, the Finnish broadcasting company’s CD of the year (2018).
2017 saw the premieres of Andrew Lawrence-King’s first two operatic compositions: 'Kalevala: the Opera', setting the Finnish national epic to ancient traditional melodies; and 'Arianna a la recherche', a remake of Monteverdi’s lost 1608 masterpiece from Rinucini’s libretto and the surviving musical fragment, the famous Lamento. Andrew’s latest recording traces the roots of favourite Christmas carols from the Finnish 'Piae Cantiones' (1582) with the Helsinki Utopia Choir, released on Jordi Savall’s AliaVox Diversa label (2019).
From 2010-2015, Dr Lawrence-King was Senior Visiting Research Fellow for the Australian Centre for the History of Emotions. He is Professor of Early Harp and Continuo at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London and Director of Opera Omnia, Academy for Early Opera & Dance, Institute at Moscow State Theatre 'Natalya Sats'. He is currently working on an English translation of 'Il Corago', the anonymous c1630 guide for baroque opera directors. Inspired by 'Peter & the Wolf' and the 'Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra', his latest operatic composition, 'The Play of Music & Time: an Explorer’s Guide to Early Opera' will be premiered in 2020.
Andrew Lawrence-King directs The Harp Consort, combining state-of-the art early music performance with stylish improvisation & entertaining stage presentation; Il Corago, the production team for historical staging of early opera; the International Baroque Opera Studio and Opera Omnia Moscow.
Andrew's hobbies include marathon running, sailing, kayaking, fencing (modern epée & historical rapier) and Tai Chi. He is a qualified hypnotist.