Christophe Rousset

French Harpsichordist and Conductor (b.1961, Aix-en-Provence)

Christophe Rousset, founder of the musical ensemble Les Talens Lyriques, is a French harpsichord player and conductor. He is a seasoned interpreter of 17th and 18th century repertoire and passionate about unpublished scores.

Christopher Rousset studied the harpsichord at the Schola Contorum de Paris with Huguette Dreyfus and at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague with Bob van Asperen. He quickly made his mark as a first-rate player and went on to make influential recordings on historic instruments; his interpretations of the works of F. Couperin, Rameau, d’Anglebert, Forqueray, Froberger, J. S. Bach and L. Couperin were highly praised by the press. He has a passion for discovering rare repertoire; his album dedicated to works by Durphly was rewarded with a Choc de Classica award and a Diapason d’Or. 

Alongside his career as a soloist and chamber musician, Christopher Rousset is gradually becoming known as one of the most talented conductors of his generation. He founded the Les Talens Lyriques ensemble; with them he performs on many of the world’s most prestigious stages (the Dutch National Opera, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Salle Pleyel, Opéra de Lausanne, Teatro Real, Theater an der Wien, Opéra Royal de Versailles, Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie, Barbican Centre, Carnegie Hall, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, and the Aix-en-Provence and Beaune Music Festivals). 

He has been guest conductor at the Liceu Opera Barcelona, the Teatro di San Carlo (Naples), the Scala (Milan), the Opéra Royal de Wallonie and the National Orchestra of Spain. He has also dedicated himself to musical research; he played an important role in the rediscovery of works such as Antigona by Traetta, La capricciosa corretta by Martin y Soler and Armida abbandonata by Jommelli.  He has also written a specialist book on Rameau, published by Actes Sud. 

Christophe Rousset is also a passionate teacher, in addition to running master classes for young professional musicians he, along with the members of Talens Lyrique, introduces young Parisian middle school students to music. 

Six Landmark Dates in the Life of Christophe Rousset

1983: First prize at the 7th Annual Harpsichord Competition in Bruges 

1991: Founding of Talens Lyriques 

1994: Created the soundtrack of Gérard Corbiau's Farinelli, awarded a Golden Globe Award 

1997: Awarded a Gramophone Awards for the Opening of Rameau (Bird-Lyre Editions) 

2001: Les Talens Lyriques received a Victoire de la musique, in the category Instrumental Ensemble

Six Key Recordings by Christophe Rousset

1991: Jean-Philippe Rameau - Complete harpsichord pieces (L'Oiseau Lyre)

1996: Bach - 12 Polonaises (Veritas/Virgin) 

2001: Antoine Forqueray - Harpsichord pieces (Decca)

2008: Jean-Philippe Rameau - Castor & Pollux (DVD Opus Arte) 

2011: 3 Tragediennes "Héroïnes romantiques/Véronique Gens" (Virgin Classics)

2012: Jacques Duphly by Christophe Rousset (Aparté)