In January 2015, the violinist Julien Chauvin founded a new period-instrument orchestra with the ambition of reviving a famous eighteenth-century orchestra, the Concert de la Loge Olympique.
That orchestra, founded in 1783, has remained famous for commissioning the ‘Paris’ Symphonies from Joseph Haydn, possibly through the agency of the Chevalier de Saint-George. The Concert de la Loge Olympique was considered one of the finest orchestras in Europe. It played first at the Hôtel de Bullion, Paris, and was later resident at the Tuileries Palace under the aegis of Marie-Antoinette.
At that time, the majority of musicians were Freemasons, and many concert associations were linked to Lodges. Values such as social harmony and equality by merit found in the music an ideal terrain in which to grow and express themselves in new genres such as the symphonie concertante.
Today, this new orchestra of variable format is constructed on a unique model in France, inviting collaborations from top soloists and conductors. It offers chamber music, symphonic and vocal programmes directed from the bow or the baton and maintains a large repertoire from the Baroque era to the turn of the twentieth century.
The aim of this re-creation is also to explore new forms of concert inspired by its original deployment at the end of the eighteenth century. Projects mix different genres and artists even on the same evening and establish links with other artistic disciplines.
As a consequence of the research into French music which founder-conductor Julien Chauvin has pursued for more than ten years, the ensemble continues to rediscover and recreate forgotten works from the national repertoire in partnership with the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles and the Palazzetto Bru Zane in Venice.
As the French Committee for Olympic Sport (CNOSF) has opposed the orchestra’s use of the adjective ‘Olympic’, it has been forced to truncate its historic name and has been known since June 2016 as Le Concert de la Loge.
On tour, the Concert de la Loge has appeared on several French opera stages with Haydn’s Armida, directed by Mariame Clément, as well as in concert with soloists Karina Gauvin, Sandrine Piau, Edwin Crossley-Mercer, Eduarda Melo, Jean Rondeau and Justin Taylor.
Future projects include a tour with countertenor Philippe Jaroussky to Europe, Asia and South America, a touring production of Sacchini’s opera Le Cid directed by Sandrine Anglade, and performances of Lemoyne’s opera Phèdre, directed by Marc Paquien at the Caen Opera and the Theatre des Bouffes du Nord.
On disc, the group begins its cycle of Haydn's Paris Symphonies. Each season's programme is performed, according to the tradition of the time, with a guest artist. The first recording was with Sandrine Piau and appeared in October 2016 on the Aparte label to critical acclaim (Diamant d'Opera, Grand Prix Charles Cros....)
The orchestra is supported by the Ministry of Culture and Communication, by the Caisse des Dépôts (principal sponsor), by the Orange Foundation, by the Caisse d’Épargne Île-de-France, by the Banque de France and by the F. Kahn-Hamm’s Fund. It has a residency at the Jean-Baptiste Lully Conservatoire (Puteaux) and is associate artist at the Singer Polignac Foundation.
Julien Chavin violin and conductor
Julien Chauvin, winner of the Prix du Concours Général de Paris in 1997, studied violin with Vera Beths at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague and period-instrument interpretation in Baroque and Classical music with Wilbert Hazelzet, Jaap ter Linden and Anner Bylsma.
In 2003, he was a prizewinner at the Inter¬national Early Music competition in Bruges and has performed as soloist in South America, South Africa, Georgia, at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and at the Easter Festival in Deauville, France.
He has appeared with such Baroque ensembles as Concerto Köln, Les Musiciens du Louvre, Le Concert d’Astrée and l’Ensemble Baroque de Limoges. He also performs the Romantic and modern repertoire and has worked in close collabo¬ration with Steve Reich, György Kurtág, Thierry Escaich, Thomas Adès and Philippe Hersant. He gives recitals with fellow soloists Renaud Capuçon, Jérôme Pernoo, Jérome Ducros, Bertrand Chamayou, Christophe Coin, Patrick Cohen and Alain Planès. After a ten-year collaboration with the ensemble Le Cercle de l’Harmonie, which he directed with conductor Jérémie Rhorer, Julien Chauvin established a new orchestra, Le Concert de la Loge Olympique. At the same time, he continues to perform with the Quatuor Cambini-Paris which was formed in 2007.
As musical director, Julien Chauvin has collab¬orated on many operatic productions including Era la notte staged by Juliette Deschamps with Anna Caterina Antonacci, Félicien David’s Le Saphir produced by Palazzetto Bru Zane and Haydn’s opera Armida staged by Mariame Clément. As conductor, he has directed with the violin Esterházy Hofkapelle, the Orchestre régional d’Avignon and the Orkiestra Historyczna of Katowice. Julien Chauvin has also begun to develop his work in North America with the Folger Consort in Washington and the Quebec Symphony Orchestra.
He is a regular guest on the radio stations France Musique and Radio Classique. The Mezzo TV channel devoted a portrait to him in 2006. He has recorded concertante works by Haydn, Beethoven and Berlioz with Le Cercle de l’Har-monie on the Eloquentia and Ambroisie-Naïve labels.
Julien Chauvin plays a Baroque violin by Jacob Stainer from 1670 (formerly the ex-Mo¬zart-Wranitzki), on loan from a patron of the arts, and a Romantic violin by Giuseppe Rocca from 1839, in the framework of the ‘Adopt-a-Musician’ project.
September 2018, Aparté
with Justin Taylor
October 2017, Aparté
with Sandrine Piau
September 2016, Aparté
Concerts at the Fondation Singer-Polignac
Seasonal concert : Vivaldi et la Sérénissime | December 21, 2017