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Little Missenden Festival: Gesualdo Six

Friday October 11, 2019 at 20:00
St John the Baptist Church, Little Missenden
£22, £16, £8
Phone for tickets: 0333 666 3366 (from 5th August)
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Tickets "at the door" - until sold out
  1. Ave verum corpus - William Byrd
  2. Vigilate - William Byrd
  3. Christe, qui lux et ed dies I - Robert White
  4. Deliver me from mine enemies - Robert Parsons
  5. O Lord, in thy wrath rebuke me not - Orlando Gibbons
  6. Suscipe quaeso, Domine - Thomas Tallis
  7. If ye love me - Thomas Tallis
  8. Loquebantur variis linguis - Thomas Tallis
  9. Tunes for Archbishop Parker’s Psalter - Thomas Tallis
  10. When David heard - Thomas Tomkins
  11. Ave Maria, mater Dei - William Cornysh (Sr)
  12. Veni Sancte Spiritus, Veni Creator - John Dunstable
  13. Ad te clamamus - Christopher Tye
  14. In pace in idipsum - Christopher Tye
  15. Tota pulchra es - John Plummer
  16. Haec dies - Thomas Morley

English Motets

The Gesualdo Six is a vocal consort, directed by Owain Park, which comprises some of the country's finest young choral singers. Formed in 2014 for a performance of Gesualdo’s Tenebrae Responsories for Maundy Thursday in the chapel of Trinity College, Cambridge, the group went on to give over one hundred performances around the United Kingdom and abroad in its first four years. Over that time, they further developed their passion for ensemble singing, that for several of them, stemmed from formative years as choristers in churches and cathedrals around the country. The group previously sang at the Festival in 2016.

This wonderful programme of English motets vividly illustrates how music accommodated itself to the political turbulence of the 15th and 16th centuries. Lavish Catholic services required elaborate music and Latin texts. Edward VI’s stricter Protestantism demanded simpler settings where each word was audible. Then, in Elizabeth’s reign, a more relaxed simplicity combined clarity with musical refinement.

Tallis was the supreme exponent of reinvention – consistent in quality even while his style changed dramatically. The recusant Byrd, retaining the Queen’s favour, gave voice to the plight of fellow Catholics with some of the most enduring music of the era. This was a period of incredible productivity when many other talented composers blossomed and printed sheet music became widely available.

“…a beatific smile of pure enjoyment as we listened to this admirably constructed programme” Cathedral Music Magazine, “At times you felt like there were a hundred voices; at others, only one” Varsity

St John the Baptist Church
Little Missenden
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