Arion Baroque Orchestra, founded in 1981, is the only early music orchestra based in the province of Québec performing on period instruments. The clarity and freshness of Arion’s interpretations have been remarked upon since its first concerts; the delicacy of its readings of well-chosen and varied works has never wavered in 35 years. Constant attention to detail has earned the orchestra, led by the enlightened artistic vision of flutist Claire Guimond, a place among the most renowned early music ensembles in North America and throughout the world.
The group offers a prestigious concert series in Montreal featuring more than twenty musicians and with the participation of internationally known guest conductors. Arion has hosted such celebrated conductors as Jaap ter Linden, Monica Huggett, Barthold Kuijken, Christophe Rousset, Stefano Montanari and Elizabeth Wallfisch, to name just a few. Arion has been awarded many prizes and grants that have enabled the orchestra to stage concert tours regularly in Canada, the United States, Mexico, Asia and Europe.
Arion has also put together an impressive recording collection with 30 titles both as an ensemble and as an orchestra, distributed internationally and on the web. Such famous artists as sopranos Karina Gauvin, Agnès Mellon and Suzie LeBlanc, mezzo Kimberly Barber, altos Matthew White and Daniel Taylor, baritone Max van Egmond and violinist Monica Huggett, as well as Barthold Kuijken, Jaap ter Linden and Stefano Montanari. Arion also provides a platform for a star-studded galaxy of soloists from among the best early music musicians in Canada.