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Damien Guillon

Damien Guillon

Damien Guillon is a French counter-tenor whose repertoire is primarily focussed around Renaissance and Baroque works. He is also the lead member of the ensemble Le Banquet Celeste.

The French counter-tenor, Damien Guillon, began his musical training in 1989 at the Maîtrise de Bretagne directed by Jean-Michel Noël, studying singing, music theory, music history, harmony and organ, and received from childhood a complete musical education. He participated in numerous concerts in the choir, and very early began to appear as a soprano soloist in the St John Passion (BWV 245) by J.S. Bach, Vespers to the Virgin by C. Monteverdi and the Magic Flute by W.A. Mozart at the Ópera de Rennes. From 1998 to 2001, he studied at the Maîtrise du Center de Musique Baroque de Versailles, directed by Olivier Schneebeli. To perfect his vocal technique and deepen his research on the interpretation of early music, he studied also with Howard Crook, Jérôme Corréas, Gisèle Fixe, Viviane Durand, Noëlle Barker and Maarten Köningsberger. Parallel to singing, he studied organ with Frédéric Desenclos and Véronique Le Guen, and won the Premiers Prix for basso continuo and hasrpsichord at the Conservatoire de Boulogne-Billancourt in the class and Frédéric Michel and Laure Morabito. In 2004 he entered the prestigious Schola Cantorum Basiliensis to study with the counter-tenor Andreas Scholl.

Damien Guillon has sung as a soloist with many early music ensembles under the baton of renowned conductors such as Vincent Dumestre and the Poème Harmonique, Jean-Christophe Spinosi and Ensemble Matheus, Philippe Pierlot and the Ricercar Consort, Jérôme Corréas and Les Paladins, Françoise Lasserre and Akadêmia Ensemble, Gilbert Bezzina and l'Ensemble Baroque de Nice, Martin Gester and Le Parlement de Musique, Arie Van Beek and l'Orchestre d'Auvergne, Hervé Niquet and Le Concert Spirituel, Jean-Claude Malgoire and La Grande Écurie et la Chambre du Roy, as well as with Christophe Rousset and Philippe Herreweghe. His broad repertoire encompasses Songs of the Renaissance and the great oratorios and operas of the Baroque (St John Passion (BWV 245), Mass in B minor (BWV 232), Lutheran Masses, Christmas Oratorio (BWV 248) and Cantatas for alto solo by J.S. Bach, Messiah by George Frideric Handel's, King Arthur and Dido and Aeneas by H. Purcell).

Damien Guillon is regularly invited to give recitals in France and abroad, and has participated in several stage productions, among them Athalia by G.F. Handel under the baton of Paul McCreesh. He has participated in a dozen recordings and performed at major European festivals of early music: Versailles, Ambronay, Beaune, Utrecht, Rome, Lisbon.

In 2006, Damien Guillon sang the Witch in Dido. During the 2006-2007 season, he performed at the Théatre du Châtelet in Paris, in the Magnificat (BWV 243) by J.S. Bach with Les Folies Françoises and Patrick Cohën-Akenine, and sang the roles of Arcanio in Teseo by G.F. Handel at the Opera de Nice under the baton of Gilbert Bezzina and Anfinomo in Il Ritorno d'Ulisse by C. Monteverdi at the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels under the baton of Philippe Pierlot.