Founded by Harry Blech in 1949 as the UK’s first chamber orchestra, the London Mozart Players (LMP) has achieved international renown for its outstanding live performances and CD recordings of the core Classical repertoire.
As principal conductor, Gérard Korsten continues to grow the strong Classical tradition developed by Andrew Parrott, Matthias Bamert and Jane Glover. The LMP enjoys connections with Hilary Davan Wetton as Associate Conductor, and Howard Shelley as Conductor Laureate, and continues to work closely with many of the world’s finest soloists.
In addition the LMP also plays an active part in contemporary music, giving many world premières and commissioning new works, in recent years by composers including Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Tarik O’Regan, Sally Beamish, Cecilia McDowall, Lynne Plowman, Fraser Trainer and Jonathan Dove. In March 2011 the LMP appointed Roxanna Panufnik as Associate Composer.
From 1989, the LMP’s home has been Fairfield Halls, Croydon, thanks to generous funding from the London Borough of Croydon. It also has strong relationships with other major UK venues, and is the Orchestra in Residence for Grayshott Concerts. The 2015/16 season sees the orchestras return to historic venue St John’s, Smith Square, in ongoing collaborations with Howard Shelley, Hilary Davan Wetton and Gérard Korsten.
The LMP has developed an extensive and highly regarded education, community and audience development programme, LMP Interactive, and is particularly committed to developing new audiences in outer London boroughs as well as rural areas across the nation. Working with educational institutions also brings inspiring and valued relationships, providing a professional grounding for young musicians; the LMP is associated with Royal Holloway University of London, Wellington College, the Portsmouth Grammar School and the Whitgift Foundation Schools in Croydon. Other ongoing ventures include visiting care homes and concert demonstrations in primary and secondary schools.
Touring is a major part of the orchestra’s schedule, with regular appearances at festivals and concert series throughout the UK and abroad. Overseas, the LMP has visited China, Spain, Belgium, France and Germany. Recording has played a major part in the orchestra’s life for many years. A long relationship with Chandos includes many recordings of works by Haydn and Mozart and an acclaimed Contemporaries of Mozart series numbers over 20 CDs. New Naxos release Flowers of the Field in collaboration with City of London Choir and Hilary Davan Wetton reached No.1 in the Classical Album Charts.
In June 2014 the LMP began a new and exciting phase in its history, becoming the first chamber orchestra in the UK to be managed both operationally and artistically by the players.