Best of Boston

2014 BEST Classical Music Ensemble

The Handel and Haydn Society

The august ensemble approaches its bicentennial season in peak shape, with an artistic director, Harry Christophers, who understands that early music should be not just "authentic" but also, you know, musical. With excellent guest conductors like Scott Metcalfe and Richard Egarr—and programming that last year ranged from Purcell’s The Indian Queen to Beethoven’s Seventh to Christmas music by four different Bachs—it’s not only the oldest continuously performing arts group in America, it’s also one of the best.