‘La Serenissima have a glorious and all-too-rare ability to make one’s pulse race afresh with every new project’

© ‘L’Inverno’ Manchester MS

The Beginning

Founded in 1994 by violinist Adrian Chandler, La Serenissima is now recognised as the UK’s leading exponent of the music of eighteenth century Venice and connected composers. Uniquely, we present world-class musical performances in concert and recording where all the research and editorial work is our own. Described by Gramophone Magazine as having ‘a glorious and all-too-rare ability to make one’s pulse race afresh with every new project’ we have been praised for our ‘fresh approach’ (BBC Music Magazine), ‘dazzling inventiveness’ (The Strad Magazine) and singled out for our ‘difference in attack’ from other orchestras (The Independent).

We delight in bringing great baroque music to the widest possible audience through our trademark mix of ‘blockbuster’ musical works and unknown gems; through live performances, talks and workshops; and through our recordings which are available to all. We’ve championed a plethora of neglected works by composers ranging from Dall’Abaco to Composer X and have also brought to life Vivaldi’s operas Catone in Utica, Giustino, La Fida Ninfa, L’Olimpiade, Ottone in villa and Tito Manlio.


La Serenissima has appeared at many of the UK’s leading festivals including the Bath Bach, Bath International, Beverley, Buxton, Cambridge Summer, Chelsea, Cheltenham, Lichfield, Ryedale, South Bank, Warwick and York Early Music, and at venues including Bridgewater Hall, St George’s Bristol, Snape Maltings, Cadogan Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall and Wigmore Hall. We have given concerts for Music in the Round and leading cultural tours operator Martin Randall Travel; we have also received support from Arts Council England for UK touring projects Vivaldi: The Red Priest and The Four Seasons. We have performed abroad in Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Malta, Mexico and Spain to great acclaim. During 2016/17 we completed our first ever residency at St John’s Smith Square entitled The Grand Tour which incorporated six ground-breaking programmes of music from the Italian States.


Since we started making records (in 2003), La Serenissima has been universally applauded by publications including American Record Guide, BBC Music Magazine, Diapason, Falstaff Magazine, Fanfare Magazine, Gaudisc, Goldberg Magazine, Gramophone Magazine, La Stampa, The Evening Standard, The Guardian, The Independent, The Irish Times, The Strad and The Sunday Times for our performances on the Avie Label. We won Gramophone Awards in the ‘Baroque Instrumental’ category in 2010 for Vivaldi: The French Connection, and in 2017 for The Italian Job. Our recordings have regularly made the Top 10 of the UK Specialist Classical Chart, received frequent award nominations, been featured as ‘Disc of the Month’ and ‘Concerto Choice’ (BBC Music Magazine), ‘Editor’s Choice’ (Gramophone Magazine), ‘Drive Discovery’ (Classic FM) and on BBC Radio 3 programmes ‘Record Review’ and ‘Building a Library’. Part of the follow-up album to our first ever record Per Monsieur Pisendel has been used on the soundtrack to hit American TV series The Originals.

© Fatkoala Images
© Eric Richmond

We celebrated our 21st birthday by recording a new edition of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons (Manchester version) alongside works for violin ‘in tromba marina’, a reconstruction collaboration between violinist Adrian Chandler, luthier David Rattray and the musicologist Michael Talbot which was a ‘first’ in modern times. The record entered the UK Specialist Classical Chart at number 8, received numerous accolades in the press (including Irish Times ‘Classical Album of the Year’) and was ranked among the Top 3 choices in Radio 3’s ‘Building a Library’ on The Four Seasons (which covered a discography beginning in the 1940s). Our 2017 release The Italian Job brings alive instrumental music for 4 trumpets, timpani, wind and strings; the disc was showcased on BBC Radio 3’s ‘Record Review’ and Classic FM’s ‘Drive Discovery’, it was ‘Editor’s Choice’ in Gramophone (May 2017) and went on to secure the group’s second Gramophone Award. Our latest release Vivaldi x2 spent 11 weeks in the UK Charts, and has been reviewed widely. ‘Under Adrian Chandler, the playing, vibrant yet polished to perfection, is superb.’ The Sunday Times September 2018

The Future

Our story is still unfolding: we’re celebrating our 25th Anniversary in 2019 and building exciting plans to expand our touring activity, research, outreach and recording projects. You can find out more here:

La Serenissima

Company no. 8370390 | Charity no. 1154940
Registered address: Hillside, Bourton-on-the-Hill, Moreton in Marsh, Gloucestershire GL56 9AH

La Serenissima is a Member of the Association of British Orchestras & a Founder Member of Opera UK.