Friday, 2 November 2018

Long Melford, 18 November

Sunday 18 November, 7:30pm

Tickets £16 from Theatre Royal Box Office 01284 769505

The Song of Solomon, otherwise known as the Song of Songs, features some of the most beautiful and sensuous poetic language in the Bible.

Celebrated liturgically as an allegory of the relationship between Christ and his bride the Church, the verses themselves are plainly erotic, evoking a luxuriant sexuality in terms of fragrant spices, ripening vines, orchards and gardens richly planted with pomegranates and lilies. This coalescence of spiritual meaning and sensuality gave free rein to Renaissance composers’ powers of musical expression, allowing them to reflect a heavenly beauty in music that is nevertheless richly grounded in a garden of earthly delights.

Cambridge Renaissance Voices explore this repertoire across Renaissance Europe, from Franco-Flemish composers such as Lassus and Clemens non Papa, through the music of Palestrina in Italy, to that of Tomas Luis da Victoria and Francisco Guerrero in Spain.

Flemish-born Orlando Lassus spent time in many different countries but settled in Munich in the service of the Duke of Bavaria. He was prolific and his music influential. He wrote about 60 settings of the mass, generally ‘parody’ masses based on borrowed tunes. In the case of the Osculetur Me mass, however, he used material from his own motet on the text. In the course of the mass, each of the motifs from the motet reappear in various different guises, rather like a theme and variations where the melody is first unvarnished (in the Kyrie) then progressively elaborated (especially in the Creed) before returning to a pure but transformed rendition to close (the Agnus Dei).

The programme also includes Victoria's incredible motet 'Vadam et circuibo'. The opening section of the text translates as follows: "I will rise, and will go about the city: in the streets and the broad ways I will seek him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, and I found him not. I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, if you find my beloved, that you tell him that I languish with love." A piece of astonishing beauty and drama, this work surely derives its special quality from the composer's intensely emotional response to the text.

Monday, 17 September 2018

Waltham Abbey 6 October

We're very excited to be singing a concert in the evocative space of Waltham Abbey, where Thomas Tallis spent some of his formative years in the reign of Henry VIII.

It's a short lunchtime recital, and it's free to attend.

We'll be bringing the sunshine of Portugal and Spain to autumnal Essex. After this, our next concert is back at Long Melford on 18 November.

Sunday, 2 September 2018

Long Melford, 18 November 2018

Sunday 18 November, 7:30pm

Tickets £16 from Theatre Royal Box Office 01284 769505

The Song of Solomon, otherwise known as the Song of Songs, features some of the most beautiful and sensuous poetic language in the Bible.

Celebrated liturgically as an allegory of the relationship between Christ and his bride the Church, the verses themselves are plainly erotic, evoking a luxuriant sexuality in terms of fragrant spices, ripening vines, orchards and gardens richly planted with pomegranates and lilies. This coalescence of spiritual meaning and sensuality gave free rein to Renaissance composers’ powers of musical expression, allowing them to reflect a heavenly beauty in music that is nevertheless richly grounded in a garden of earthly delights.

Cambridge Renaissance Voices explore this repertoire across Renaissance Europe, from Franco-Flemish composers such as Lassus and Clemens non Papa, through the music of Palestrina in Italy, to that of Tomas Luis da Victoria and Francisco Guerrero in Spain.

Saturday, 17 February 2018

St Cross, Winchester, 19 May 2018

Saturday 19 May, 7:30pm

The choir is delighted to return to the evocative and friendly surroundings of the church of St Cross in Winchester.

Book tickets. http://www.winchester-cathedral.org.uk/events/cambridge-renaissance-voices-concordia/

The programme will include partsongs, anthems and consort music from the height of the Elizabethan age to the post-Commonwealth musical revival.

Concordia viol consort (hear them on YouTube), founded by Mark Levy and Joanna Levine, plays English music of the golden age and a wide range of renaissance and baroque repertoire from Italy, Spain, Germany and France. They have worked with guest artists on other instruments and, above all, the human voice, and have appeared at the Wigmore Hall, festivals throughout the country and major venues across Europe.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Long Melford concert 19 Nov 2017

Sunday 19 November, 7:30pm

Programme includes:
Victoria: Missa Laetatus Sum for three choirs
Josquin and Gombert: Mille regretz
Lobo: Versa est in luctum
Guerrero: Ave virgo sanctissima
Heinrich Isaac, Virgo prudentissima

With I Musici Della Contessa, a six-part renaissance instrumental ensemble, comprising two cornetts, three sackbuts and curtal.

Tickets available online from the Theatre Royal Box Office in Bury St Edmunds.

Five hundred years ago, in 1517 in Vienna, the court of the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I was in mourning at the death of the court composer, Heinrich Isaac. He had served the court of the most powerful family in Europe since 1503, after a distinguished career as singer and composer mainly in Innsbruck and Florence. Our modern day equivalent for Isaac would be a composer-laureate, commissioned to write for special occasions, and in this he excelled.

Virgo Prudentissima is an extraordinary work, which typifies Isaac’s ability to compose on demand. It was composed for the Reichstag meeting in 1507 which confirmed Maximilian’s role as Emperor. Set for six parts, it involves intricate solo passages interspersed with massive, resonant choruses.

Victoria’s Missa Laetatus Sum, which he published in 1600, is an impressive work for three choirs, inspired by the Italian style he encountered when living in Rome. It is based on his own setting of the psalm Laetatus sum, (I was glad when they said unto me, we will go into the house of the Lord). It’s very likely that a combination of voices and instruments would have been deployed for a piece of this scale.

Also composing for the Spanish court were Alonso Lobo and Francisco Guerrero. Lobo’s motet Versa est in luctum (My harp is turned to mourning) was written for the funeral of Philip II in 1598. Guerrero worked for a time for Maximillian II, and his motet Ave virgo, in which the two soprano lines follow eachother in canon throughout, became one of the most famous works of the succeeding century.



Saturday, 16 September 2017

Waltham Abbey, 7 October

There's a chance to hear the choir sing a short lunchtime concert at Tallis's church, Waltham Abbey, on 7th October.

We'll be singing a selection of music by the foremost English composers of the Tudor era, Tallis's legacy, and finish off with some music from the Stuart age before and after the Commonwealth.

12.30 Free of charge.


Thursday, 31 August 2017

Long Melford this November

We are delighted to return to Long Melford in November, and will perform Victoria's Missa Laetatus Sum for three choirs, motets by Josquin and Morales, and the magnificent celebratory work by Heinrich Isaac, Virgo Prudentissima.

We will be joined by I Musici Della Contessa, a six-part renaissance instrumental ensemble, comprising two cornetts, three sackbuts and curtal.

Tickets available online from the Theatre Royal Box Office in Bury St Edmunds.