Le Banquet Céleste

orchestre banquet céleste foyer opéra de Rennes

Le Banquet Céleste is an early music ensemble founded by the French musician Damien Guillon, that includes a regular group of singers and instrumentalists all familiar with the approach of the ensemble.

déco étoiles

Together they have appeared in a variety of venues such as the Opera in Rennes, where the ensemble has been in residence since 2016, the Angers-Nantes Opera, the Salle Gaveau in Paris, the Théâtre de Cornouaille, the Passerelle de Saint-Brieuc, the Quartz de Brest and the Abbaye de Fontevraud, as well as several major Festivals: Ambronay, Sablé, Saintes, the International Baroque Music Festival of Beaune, the Abbaye de Noirlac, Sinfonia in the Périgord region, Les Arts Renaissants (Toulouse), the Festival de Froville, the Festival de Lanvellec, Saint-Michel-en-Thiérache, etc. Le Banquet Céleste also enjoys a remarkable international presence, performing in many festivals such as the Oudemusiek Festival in Utrecht, the Valetta International Baroque Festival, the Klangvokal Festival (Dortmund), the Pergolesi Spontini Festival in Jesi (IT), the Bach Festival in Lausanne, Flagey Musiq’3 (Brussels), Concertgebouw (Bruges), Singel (Antwerp), Salle Bourgie (Montreal), as well as in China – appearing in Beijing and Wuhan. The ensemble’s programmes cover Renaissance and Baroque pieces from all over Europe – ranging from the most renowned composers including J. Dowland, H. Purcell, G.F Handel , A.Vivaldi, G.B Pergolesi or J.S Bach to less known figures such as G. Frescobaldi, A.Caldara, A. Stradella, P.H Erlebach or G. Karpsberger.  Le Banquet Céleste also took a step into the world of opera, with its stage performance of G.F Handel’s Acis and Galatea (staged by Anne-Laure Liégeois) and of the San Giovanni Battista Oratorio by A. Stradella (staged by Vincent Tavernier). Following a recording in 2012 dedicated to Bach’s cantatas BWV 35 and 170 for alto, and with the record having received stellar reviews, Damien Guillon pursued his research and interpretative work by depoting a second album to these Cantatas for alto solo: the Cantatas BWV 169 and BWV 82, combined on the same record scheduled for release in March 2019 (Alpha Classics). In 2018, the oratorio Maddalena ai piedi di Cristo by A. Caldara (Alpha Classics) was released and awarded s CHOC award by Classica. Two other records dedicated to Italian Baroque music were released in collaboration with Glossa. The first was included Nisi Dominus by Vivaldi and Psalm 51 Tilge, Höchster meine Sünden by JS Bach with the Soprano Céline Scheen, and the other was Affetti Amorosi focusing on Arie Musicali by G. Frescobaldi. In 2019, the ensemble celebrated its 10th anniversary. This was an excellent opportunity to list some of its most exceptional work: St John Passion by JS Bach (Rennes Opera, Angers-Nantes Opera, Festival de Sablé, Chaise Dieu Festival; Maddalena ai Piedi di Cristo by A. Caldara, a chamber music programme including Lieder pieces by P.H Erlebach, as well as a programme of Sacrae Symphoniae, Canzone & Concerti excerpts by G. Gabrieli. Le Banquet Céleste has been in residence at the Rennes Opera house since 2016, supported by the Ministry of Culture (DRAC Bretagne organisation), Brittany’s Regional Council and the City of Rennes. Le Banquet Céleste is also subsidised by the Fondation Orange, counts the Mécénat Musical Société Générale as its primary sponsor and the Caisse des Dépôts (Deposits and Consignments Fund) as its major patron.