Philippe Herreweghe was born in Ghent where he studied at both the University and Music Conservatory.

With an energetic, authentic and rhetorical approach to baroque music, he later founded Collegium Vocale Gent.

In 1977 he founded the ensemble La Chapelle Royale in Paris, with whom he performed music of the French Golden Age and has founded several other ensembles, with interpretations stretching from the Renaissance to contemporary music. These include the Ensemble Vocal Européen, specialising in Renaissance polyphony, and the Orchestre des Champs Élysées, founded in 1991, with the aim of playing pre-Romantic and Romantic repertoire on original instruments.

Philippe Herreweghe has received numerous awards for his consistent artistic imagination and commitment. In 1990 the European music press named him “Musical Personality of the Year”. Philippe and Collegium Vocale Gent were appointed Cultural Ambassadors of Flanders in 1993. A year later he was awarded the Belgian order of Officier des Arts et Lettres, and in 1997 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Catholic University of Leuven.

In 2003 he received the French title Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur. In 2010 the city of Leipzig awarded him its Bach-Medaille for his great service as a performer of Bach. In 2017 Philippe Herreweghe received an honorary doctorate at Ghent University

Image credit: Michiel Hendryckx