King's alumnus and Honorary Fellow Sir John Eliot Gardiner (KC 1961) will conduct The Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists at the pre-coronation concert on 6 May at Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace have confirmed.
Sir John's work as Artistic Director of ensembles such as the Monteverdi Choir, which began life in King's Chapel almost 60 years ago, has marked him out as a central figure in the early music revival and a pioneer of historically-informed performance. He is a regular guest of the world’s leading symphony orchestras, including the London Symphony Orchestra and the Berlin Philharmonic.
Following the announcement, Sir John Eliot commented:
He [King Charles] very, very generously asked me to do the first 20 minutes when everybody has arrived and are in their seats but before he himself arrives in his carriage. (…) It's a wonderful honour to kick off the proceedings with some very beautiful classical music.
Sir John, who turns 80 this week, was awarded a knighthood for his services to music in the 1998 Queen's Birthday Honours, receiving the honour from the then Prince Charles.