The new music ensemble CAPUT was founded in 1987 by young Icelandic musicians. It started as a small chamber group but grew rapidly to a sinfonietta with up to 18 players. The size of Caput has always been flexible. Each member can stand out as a soloist and the ensemble plays duos, trios, quartets, octets etc.
The "childhood" of CAPUT was spent in Iceland but since 1992 the ensemble has given numerous concerts abroad. The first tour was organised by Italian composers, forming the group "Nuove Sincronie" and Gaudeamus in Holland with concerts in Amsterdam, Bonn and Milan. Now Caput has performed in 15 European countries, in Canada, USA and Japan. On the list are among others: Warsaw Autumn Festival, The Gulbenkian Festival in Lisbon, Holland Festival, Prague Marathon, The International New Music Week in Bucharest, New Concert Series in Toronto and Santa Cecilia in Rome.
CAPUT organizes its own concerts in Iceland but also takes part in festivals like the Dark Music Days, Reykjavík Arts Festival and Skálholt Summer Concerts. The first CD was made for the Italian label "Stradivarius" in 1993 with music by Aldo Clementi and Riccardo Nova. Caput has now made more than 20 CDs for labels in Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, Italy, England and the United States.
CAPUT has premiered countless works by Icelandic and "Overseas" composers – everything is overseas for Icelanders. Among composers that have written for or worked with Caput are Bent Sörensen (Denmark), Olaf Anton Thommesen (Norway), Doina Rotaru (Romania), Jukka Koskinen (Finland), Veli Matti Puumala (Finland), Aldo Clementi (Italia), Fausto Romitelli (Italia) and Toshio Hosokawa (Japan). Most Icelandic composers have worked with CAPUT, some of them from beginning.
CAPUT has established itself as a force in Icelandic cultural life and as one of the leading new music ensembles in Nordic countries. The group is widely acclaimed for its powerful interpretation and technical proficiency. Performances by Caput have often been presented at the annual International Rostrum of Composers in Paris.
CAPUT received the 2011 Council of Nordic Composers prize for the advancement of contemporary Nordic classical, electro acoustic and art music.