The Academy of Ancient Music (AAM) is an orchestra with a worldwide reputation for excellence in baroque and classical music. Using historically-informed techniques, period-specific instruments and original sources, we bring music vividly to life in committed, vibrant performances.
Established nearly 50 years ago to make the first British recordings of orchestral works using original instruments, AAM has released more than 300 albums to date, collecting countless accolades including Classic BRIT, Gramophone and Edison awards. We now record on our own-label AAM Records, and are proud to be the most listened-to period-instrument orchestra online, with over one million monthly listeners on Spotify.
Beyond the concert hall, AAM is committed to nurturing the next generation of musicians and music-lovers through our innovative side-by-side learning and participation initiative AAMplify. Working in collaboration with partners at the Guildhall School, London Music Masters, Cambridgeshire Music Hub and others we reach thousands of children and young people across primary, secondary and tertiary education each year.
AAM is Associate Ensemble at London’s Barbican centre and the Teatro San Cassiano in Italy; Orchestra-in-Residence at the University of Cambridge, The Grange Festival, Milton Abbey International Summer Music Festival and The Apex, Bury St Edmunds; and Research Partner to the University of Oxford.
There are three elements that underpin AAM’s work across live performances, recordings and education and outreach projects:
Whilst the Academy of Ancient Music is known for its electrifying performances, a depth of scholarship and intellectual rigour remain at our heart. Our players have deep knowledge of their field well beyond playing their instruments, and they bring this to the preparation of all their performances; and we are active in researching, discovering, and bringing to public attention new and undeservedly neglected works. We want to invest in both new research and in new ways to share this knowledge with the world. The quest to rediscover our past is far from done.
AAM puts great emphasis on crafting concerts that bring new insight to familiar works and to reviving long-lost or forgotten masterpieces. Performing some of the most powerful and personal music ever written, our concerts, recordings and broadcasts must continue to be innovatively presented. Our precious repertoire is innately accessible and inviting. Through research, publications and performance we can reveal the past and how it influences us today, and look to share this with a new and growing audience.
Since the foundation of the Academy, an enormous body of knowledge about this music and performance practice has been built, and we are passionate about adding to this knowledge, and passing it on to the next generation of both players and listeners. We want to work with more young people to introduce them to this wonderful music; with more music students to help them learn how to play it; with our apprentices to ease them into the professional world; and with young soloists as they embark on their careers.