La Petite Bande
• Founded 1972
Often appears with
Belgian period instrument orchestra La Petite Bande takes its name and constitution from Lully's own orchestra at the court of Louis XIV. It was founded in 1972 by violinist and conductor Sigiswald Kuijken in order to record Lully's Le bourgeois gentilhomme with Gustav Leonhardt for Deutsche Harmonia Mundi. Although it had only been put together for a few recordings, it soon established a reputation as a leader in the performance of French Baroque music. La Petite Bande began giving regular concerts and appearing at festivals throughout the world. The orchestra's repertoire expanded to include music by Bach, Handel, Gluck, Haydn, and Mozart. La Petite Bande is subsidized by the Ministry of the Flemish Community of Belgium and by the Province of Vlaams-Brabant. Since 1997, La Petite Bande has been orchestra-in-residence in Leuven. Between 2005 and 2012, the ensemble and Kuikjen recorded a cycle of Bach's liturgical cantatas.
In 2009, La Petite Bande was told its funding would be cut after 2010, thus spurring a successful online effort to save the group. Later recordings include Monteverdi: Vespro della Beate Vergine (2008) and Bach: H-Moll-Mess (2009).