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P a s t   C o n c e r t s

Season 2018-19

Our 2018-19 season included some exciting guest conductors and a whole host of wonderful music: 

O beata Trinitas: Renaissance music for Father, Son and Holy Ghost

Saturday 13th July 2019, 7.30pm

Venue: St. Gabriel's Pimlico, Warwick Square, SW1V 

Director: Dr David Allinson

A central tenet of Christian belief is that there is one creator, who is simultaneously Father, Son and Holy Ghost — the formulation so familiar from the Creed, and in countless prayers, that it may pass almost without a thought. The mysterious and frequently-misunderstood concept is celebrated on Trinity Sunday, one of the few major feasts in the calendar that celebrates a doctrine rather than an event or individual. In music, the concept became linked with the harmony of the major triad.


Join us for this programme of sublime mass music and motets in honour of the Trinity written during the Renaissance period, by composers from England (Tallis, Sheppard, Byrd), the low countries (Josquin, de Rore), Italy (Palestrina) and Iberia and the New World (Guerrero, Victoria, Lopez Castillas).


Miserere mei, Deus - motets of yearning and penitence

Saturday 6th April 2019, 7.30pm

Venue: St. Gabriel's Pimlico, Warwick Square, SW1V 

Director: Dr David Allinson



Available on the door - £14 / £12 (conc.)

The season of Lent has always elicited heartfelt, emotive music from composers. Our programme of penitential masterpieces is built around Josquin’s hypnotic Miserere mei Deus, almost certainly written for Holy Week devotions at the Court of Ferrara in 1504. Equally emotive are Lheritier’s warmly humane setting of Miserere mei, Domine, Gombert’s plangent Media vita and Lassus’s engrossing, rhetorical setting of Infelix ego. With other motets by Gombert, Tye, Tallis and Rore, this is a rich and varied programme of superb Lenten music, some of which may be new even to seasoned early music aficionados.


Songs of Love and Parting; My Bittersweet Valentine

Saturday 16th February 2019, 7.30pm

Venue: St. Gabriel's Pimlico, Warwick Square, SW1V 

Director: Dr David Allinson


£14 / £12 (conc.) - available on the door

As red roses wither and empty chocolate boxes are recycled, the Renaissance Singers take a wide-eyed, post-Valentine's Day tour through the ecstasies and agonies of love. With a programme mixing languages and genres, we move from suave chansons to pained madrigals and on to passionate motets setting verses from the Song of Songs.

With the UK set to leave the European Union in March 2019 (at the time of writing), the programme may take on something of a valedictory air, with music from across Renaissance Europe – Italy (Palestrina), Spain (Victoria), France and the Low Countries (Gombert, Crecquillon, Lheritier). We conclude on home territory, with a performance of perhaps the last great Tudor votive antiphon, William Mundy’s monumental Vox patris caelestis.


Quaeramus cum pastoribus

Saturday 15th December 2018, 7.30pm

Venue: St. George’s, Bloomsbury, London 

Director: Dr David Allinson

Tickets: £14/ £12 (conc.) - AVAILABLE ON THE DOOR

Cristóbal de Morales based his lush Missa Quaeramus cum pastoribus on an immensely popular popular motet by Mouton. In reworking the original material he transformed its breezy, taut four-voice textures into larger canvasses of lush, five-part polyphony, dividing the basses throughout to create rich sonorities that culminate in a seven-fold division of forces for the Agnus Dei.


To contrast with the Mass, we sing reduced-texture seasonal motets by Morales, along with works by his greatest Spanish successor, Victoria, and by Victoria’s successor at the Collegio Germanico in Rome, Annibale Stabile. An uplifting evening of festive polyphony that will be perfectly complemented by the mince pies and mulled wine available at the interval!

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Palestrina and the Papal Chapel: a century of music from Rome

Saturday 27th October 2018, 7.30pm

Venue: St. Gabriel's  Church, Warwick Square, Pimlico, London, SW1V 2AD

Director: Stephen Rice

Tickets available on the door: £14  (concessions: £12)

We return to Rome for our autumn concert as we explore the music of the composers of the Papal Chapel from the 16th century. We are delighted to welcome Stephen Rice, Director of the Brabant ensemble as our guest conductor for this concert as we perform music by Palestrina and his contemporaries. The Papal Chapel has inspired composers from all ages and the 16th century was no exception with both singers and composers traveling from Northern Europe as well as other parts of Italy and Spain for the chance to perform there. Palestrina is perhaps the composer who had the most enduring influence on the development of music from this time and his work is often seen as the high-point of Italian Renaissance polyphony. To complement Palestrina, we will also present music from his contemporaries to give a feel for the musical experience of the time.

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