We may not be able to attend concerts, workshops and the like during the Covid 19 lockdown, but there are plenty of online activities that we can access. Other EMFS are offering a huge range of online opportunities: see the 'links' page to visit their websites.
- Various dates from February to May: The Newcastle Early Music Festival will be taking place on line this year. Click here for details of the talks and concerts available.
- Saturday 27 February, 4-6.15pm: Join conductor and singer John Hancorn and writer and broadcaster Richard Wigmore in a musical exploration of Bach's St Matthew Passion. Discover the origins and cultural background, explore the music in some detail, with recorded illustrations, and join in with several choruses. Each session costs £10 (plus booking fee). Book here: https://www.trybooking.com/uk/UNM When you sign up you will receive details on how to join the Zoom online session and links to scrolling scores and pdf instrumental parts.
- Saturday 6th March, 7pm: Bellezza e Bontà - A recorded talk by Philip Thorby, organised by MEMF. Ganassi was at the centre of the musical establishment in a republic which exported its music and its musicians to the rest of Europe. We are lucky that he wrote three books on technique and performance practice. What do his three books tell us about how music was sung and played in Venice in the first half of the sixteenth century? Well, quite a lot – and not all of it sits comfortably with how we see and hear renaissance music today. Philip will summarise the information from the books and put them into the context of other writers. Then, feel free to join in the conversation!
If you know Philip you will know his love of Venice, Silvestro Ganassi and Adriaan Willaert: Venice for its innate beauty and its unique place in the history of the renaissance, Ganassi as the most famous and revered Venetian musician of his day, and Willaert as the gentle Fleming who expressed the Venetian ideals in his music and his character. Click here to book.
- Saturday 15 May: Virtual Pride and Prejudice Ball. For more information, and to book a place, please email the organiser.
- David Hatcher has been busy editing and recording his way through Odhecaton for the latest in his 'Consorts minus one' series. He has now completed the first three quarters of the collection. Please see his website dhatcher.co.uk/consort-music-minus-one, where you will find the catalogues to the first three volumes of Odhecaton, along with all the other collections.
- David Hatcher has been exploring the deeply moving repertoire of pieces related to the Dominican friar, Girolamo Savonarola, who was rather grimly hanged and burnt in the main square of Florence on 23rd May 1498. His ashes were then cast into the river Po. Preaching vehemently for church reform and railing against the corruption of Pope Alexander VI (Rodrigo Borgia) mitigated against a long life, but gained him considerable notoriety in the short period of his influence before his execution. During his last days of imprisonment he wrote a lengthy meditation on Psalm 50 (Misereremei, Deus) and began another on Psalm 30 (In te Domine speravi). Once his followers had smuggled these writings out of prison they became known throughout Europe and numerous composers with sympathetic leanings set them to some of the most profound music.
- He has created another set of 'music minus one' tracks, which include Josquin’s monumental setting of Psalm 50, and four settings of Savonarola’s words - Infelix ego, omnium auxilio destitutus by Adrian Willaert, Cipriano de Rore, Orlando di Lasso and William Byrd. In addition to these, there will be Tribularer si nescirem, a liturgical text for Lent, so far those by Palestrina and Gesualdo plus other motets associated with the friar.
Samples of the opening pages of the scores and some sound samples can be found here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/j3qzp7n2cltta2m/AABIpb7ZUZRX2A9O4ccqeCuna?dl=0
Given the length and complexity of these six-part pieces, the cost is £12 each for them (The Gesualdo - shorter and in five parts, is the usual £6). For this, you will receive a score, parts and the usual selection of sound files.
- An informal Online Early Music Forum has been created using Jamulus, open to all, to allow people to sing and play together online. For more information, click here.
- David Hatcher has created another set of pieces for Music MInus One. These are Palestrina’s twenty-nine 5-part settings of Canticum Canticorum, the Song of Songs. He says: 'These astoundingly beautiful pieces were first published by Gardano in Rome in 1584 and reissued in Venice in 1587. It is this second print that I have used as the source for my edition." You can access the “catalogue” and some sound samples from the Consort-music-minus-one page on David's website, http://www.dhatcher.co.uk/consort-music-minus-one
- David Hatcher has just finished his second collection of Consort-Music-Minus-One pieces. This collection is really singer-friendly: the beautiful settings of Petrarch’s Le Vergine by Cipriano de Rore, published in his Il terzo libro de madrigali a cinque voci, in 1548 by Gardano in Venice. These come with completely new editions of the eleven pieces prepared specifically for this project and presented as scores and parts. As they are in five voices, there are six sound files with each piece: a complete version, then five more with a different part missing in each. Each madrigal is £6 (score, parts and six sound files). Please contact David at email@example.com if you would like to make a purchase.
- Cat on the Keys Music is producing a series of backing tracks for a variety of early music instrumental works. From baroque sonatas for recorder, violin and oboe by Bach, Handel and Albinoni, to Renaissance divisions and grounds, and Purcell songs. Each work comes in a variety of tempi and pitches to suit modern and Baroque instruments, learners and more experienced players. A few tracks are free to download, with a low price-tag for all other works. To find out more, go to https://www.catonthekeysmusic.co.uk/
- The Sixteen (Musical Director Harry Christophers) are producing a range of online performances and talks: click here.
- To learn more about Ex Cathedra's activities during the lockdown, and to see how you can get involved, click here.
- Renaissance wind band The City Musick are offering downloads of 'music minus a part': for £5 per piece you get access to a score pdf [and parts where necessary], a high quality audio file of the full piece, and audio files of the piece minus the part you wish to play. See https://www.tcmusick.com/cck-music-store
- Knowing that many of us are missing playing consorts with each other, David Hatcher has made it possible for us to play with him! See here for more about the project and/or email him to place your order. All these pieces have a mere (?) four parts, so to celebrate completing the 39th and final piece, David has produced Wylkynson’s 13-voice canon Jesus autem transiens/Credo from the Eton Choirbook, on 13 bass viols! Here’s the link:https://www.dropbox.com/sh/4f3rjd8d4ddadqc/AADOVaFwwrymKjI6TwSZKmNsa?dl=0.
- Julia Bishop is offering one-to-one Baroque violin lessons on Zoom. Baroque repertoire of your choice and guidance on technical issues, Baroque performance practice etc. Fee £30.00 per hour.To find out more, email her on firstname.lastname@example.org
- Viol players may be particularly interested in this link.
- I Fagiolini have sent us links to sites where you can enjoy their work. Firstly, a new series of videos coming out once a week (two already up) where a Fagiolini track is played with the score appearing simultaneously. If you like it, they ask that you subscribe to the series - it's free of charge. Click here to visit it. They also have a site where they have uploaded a number of performances, interviews etc: click here to visit.