Emmanuelle Haïm

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Emmanuelle Haïm
Emmanuelle Haim.jpg
Emmanuelle Haïm
Background information
Origin Paris, France
Genres Baroque
Occupation(s) Musician, conductor
Instruments Harpsichord, piano, organ
Years active 1990–present
Labels Virgin
Associated acts Le Concert d`Astrée
Website http://www.leconcertdastree.fr/

Emmanuelle Haïm (French pronunciation: ​[emanɥɛl aim]) (born in Paris, France, 1967) is a French harpsichordist and conductor[1] with a particular interest in early music and Baroque music.

Early life, student & assistant years[edit]

Haïm grew up in Paris, and was raised Catholic although her father is Jewish.[2] Her musical education began early, or, in her words:

Very young, as a child. My father in a flight of fantasy bought a grand piano, and when the piano was delivered my mother wept because neither of them had a job. They both played as amateurs, and one of my aunts was a professional, assistant to Yvonne Lefébure, a well-known French pianist. I started with my aunt, who later brought me to Yvonne who was a delicious and gifted old woman. So it started early because of that piano.[3]

She spent 13 years studying at the Conservatoire Supérieur de Musique et de Danse in Paris, where she studied organ with André Isoir. She came to focus on the harpsichord, which she studied with Kenneth Gilbert and Christophe Rousset, and was awarded five first prizes at the Conservatoire.[4] William Christie invited her to work with his ensemble Les Arts Florissants, as a continuo player and musical assistant. On Christie's recommendation, she later worked as a coach and assistant to Simon Rattle,[5] as well as a guest artist with Rattle.[6]

Conducting career[edit]

After several years, she left Les Arts Florissants to become a conductor. In 2000, she formed her own baroque era ensemble, "Le Concert d'Astrée". She and her ensemble have performed at such venues as the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées (Paris) and the Barbican Centre (London).[7][8][9]

Haïm's 2001 conducting debut with Glyndebourne Touring Opera, in a production of Handel's Rodelinda, brought her to wider artistic notice.[10][11] She returned to Glyndebourne in 2006 to conduct their production of Giulio Cesare.[12] On November 2, 2007, she became the first woman to conduct at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, conducting Giulio Cesare.[13][14] In January 2010 she was fired [15] from the Paris Opéra production of Mozart's Idomeneo after the orchestra complained of aesthetic and stylistic differences.[16] She was reinstated for a new production of Rameau's Hippolyte et Aricie, but with her own Concert d'Astrée in the pit.[17]

Recording career[edit]

Haïm has a recording contract with Virgin Classics. Her collaborators have included Natalie Dessay,[18][19][20] Ian Bostridge,[21][22] Rolando Villazón, Philippe Jaroussky, Susan Graham, Sara Mingardo and Laurent Naouri.

Discography (extract)

Awards and recognition[edit]

Emmanuelle Haïm became Chevalier Légion d’Honneur in 2009, and is Chevalier of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. She holds an honorary membership of the Royal Academy of Music, London.[23]


  1. ^ Rupert Christiansen, "The Ms Dynamite of French baroque ". Telegraph, 31 December 2002.
  2. ^ Michael White, "Out of the niche", The Telegraph, 16 Jun 2004
  3. ^ Kasow, Joel. "EMMANUELLE HAIM: BEAUTY AND THE BAROQUE". Culturekiosque.com. Retrieved 1 July 2012. 
  4. ^ "Biography - Emmanuelle Haïm". Virgin Classics. Retrieved 1 July 2012. 
  5. ^ Richard Wigmore, "Belle of the Baroque". BBC Music Magazine, April 2004.
  6. ^ Rian Evans, "St John Passion/Rattle". The Guardian, 15 February 2002.
  7. ^ Ivan Hewett, "Seduced by moments of purest Enlightenment". Telegraph, 8 March 2005.
  8. ^ Geoffrey Norris, " Right arm behind the rostrum produces a lacklustre delivery". Telegraph, 12 December 2005.
  9. ^ Anthony Holden, "Don't break a leg, darling". The Observer, 18 December 2005.
  10. ^ Rupert Christiansen, "Handel's heroine doesn't ring true". Telegraph, 20 November 2001.
  11. ^ Hugh Canning, "Lightning conductor". The Times, 12 January 2003.
  12. ^ Andrew Clements, "Giulio Cesare". The Guardian, 7 August 2006.
  13. ^ Program, Giulio Cesare, Lyric Opera of Chicago 2007/8 season, page 29.
  14. ^ von Rhein, John, "Trailblazer Haim sets conducting, family life to two-part harmony". Chicago Tribune, 28 October 2007.
  15. ^ http://www.lemonde.fr/cgi-bin/ACHATS/acheter.cgi?offre=ARCHIVES&type_item=ART_ARCH_30J&objet_id=1112819&clef=ARC-TRK-D_01
  16. ^ http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2010/02/firing-emmanuelle-haim.html
  17. ^ http://www.artsjournal.com/slippeddisc/2011/03/emmanuelle_returns.html
  18. ^ Andrew Clements, "Classical CD Handel: Delirio Amoroso; Mi Palpita Il Cor, Dessay/ Le Concert d'Astree/ Haim". The Guardian, 20 January 2006.
  19. ^ Richard Wigmore, "Classical CDs of the week: Handel, Chabrier and more". Telegraph, 18 February 2006.
  20. ^ Anthony Holden, "Handel, Il trionfo del tempo e del disinganno". The Observer, 22 April 2007.
  21. ^ Rupert Christiansen, " Who needs technique when you can produce music like this?" Telegraph, 14 January 2003.
  22. ^ Richard Wigmore, "Classical CDs of the week: Monteverdi: L'Orfeo and more". Telegraph, 24 May 2004.
  23. ^ "Biography - Emmanuelle Haïm". Retrieved 2 July 2012. 

Concert reviews[edit]