Music of the Renaissance: Voices & Viols
Ars Nova Singers and STRING present two performances of music for voices and viols from Renaissance England and Scotland. The English verse anthem was one of the most popular forms of composition in the Chapel Royal from the 16th to 18th centuries, providing a showcase for the talents of the composers and virtuoso performers of the time. These chamber works include verses for solo singers accompanied by viols, alternating with passages for full chorus. Our program features three major works in this genre by Thomas Morley, William Byrd, and Orlando Gibbons. The program will also include motets by Byrd; madrigals by Michael East; Robert Carver’s rarely-performed soaring motet O bone Jesu for 19 voices, written for James IV, King of Scots; and more. Join us!
“This is music that I particularly love: Renaissance polyphony is truly music for singers, and to combine the voices with the gorgeous sound of the viols creates a very special musical and emotional experience.”
– Artistic Director Thomas Edward Morgan
Founded in 2016 by artistic director Ann Marie Morgan, STRING is an ensemble of three musicians, performing music from the Renaissance on all members of the Viola da Gamba family of instruments. Residents of the Denver/Boulder area of Colorado, Ann, Sandy and Sarah join together to form a consort of viols, ever popular amongst professional and amateur players alike during the late 16th and early 17th centuries in Europe. While the greatest expanse of the repertoire comes from the likes of William Byrd, Henry Purcell and their English colleagues, there is a wealth of works written to suit the viol consort from other parts of Europe.
Ann Marie Morgan
Rachmaninoff: The Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, op. 31
Last season, we celebrated the centenary of Rachmaninoff’s Vespers; by audience request, this season we’ll present the “other a cappella choral masterpiece” by the Russian master, composed in 1909.