Leppard, Raymond John

Leppard, Raymond John, 1927–2019, English-American conductor, composer, musicologist, and harpsicordist, b. London. A prominent scholar as well as a conductor, he was especially known for realizing 17th-century Venetian operas by such composers as Monteverdi and Cavalli, and he rediscovered and reconstructed several of Cavalli's works. He also helped to bring about a revival of interest in Baroque music. Leppard was the conductor of the English Chamber Orchestra (1959–77) and the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra (1973–80). He made his American debut with the New York Philharmonic in 1969. As the music director (1987–2001) of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, he was largely responsible for expanding its repertoire and season, and under his direction its sound became leaner and more elegant. Leppard, who became a U.S. citizen in 2003, was guest conductor at many major orchestras and opera houses in the United States and Europe, and was long been associated with the Glyndebourne Festival and Covent Garden. He also composed film scores, e.g., for Lord of the Flies (1963).

See his Authenticity in Music (1988) and Raymond Leppard on Music: An Anthology of Critical and Autobiographical Writings (1993).

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