"the gross and scope of my opinion ..." Hamlet I,1.
Thursday, July 12, 2012
WILLIAM BYRD ANNIVERSARY CONCERT
BYRD ANNIVERSARY CONCERT
Singers at the Church of St Peter and St Paul
little church has seen countless changes in its nine centuries, many
of them in the lifetime of William Byrd, who lived close by for the
latter part of his life, but rarely ventured inside. Under the
patronage of Lord Petre, this Catholic composer managed to survive
the Reformation and happily composed both masses and Anglican
heard both in this concert. The imitative polyphony of the Mass for
Five Voices, the lower parts adding body and warmth to the sound, and
O Lord Make Your Servant Elizabeth, written for the Virgin Queen.
There was music from the "lost generation", between Tallis
and Byrd, including a simple anthem by William Mundy; its Amen
delivered with affecting simplicity.
the interval – rum punch in the churchyard – a much wider range
of music: Henry VIII's greatest hit, with tambourine obbligato from
the Singers' conductor Christopher Tinker, and the very different
sound worlds of Italian madrigals and five colourful, energetic songs
typically impressive evening of choral music from the Stondon
Singers, with two bonuses: an organ Pavan by Byrd [Tinker again] on
the charmingly voiced instrument, and a delightful extract from Henry
Reed's Streets of Pompeii, first heard on radio sixty years ago.