In stile antico e moderno
Popular madrigals and chansons of the 16th century intabulated for lute performed with diminutions for the viol by Ortiz, Rognoni and Bovicelli.
These beautiful improvisations, frozen in time on paper, inspire the performers to improvise their own embellishments.
The second half, 'in stile moderno' includes virtuosic violin sonatas by early 17th century composers such as Castello, Fontana, Marini and Pandolfi Meali and dramatic toccatas by Kapsperger for the theorbo.
2 performers: violin/bass viol, lute/theorbo
In darkness let me dwell
Songs for lute by John Dowland and John Danyel, two superb Elizabethan composers writing in a highly refined and sophisticated melancholic style.
Also included are instrumental pieces and songs for the lyra viol by Tobias Hume and lute works by Dowland.
3 performers: singer, lute, bass viol
Heinrich Biber's extraordinary music has been an important part in our repertoire.
Performances of his music have included:
The Rosary sonatas cycle
The 8 violin sonatas published in 1681
The Harmonia Artificio- ariosa, a collection of 7 partitas in 3 parts published in 1696
2-4 performers: violin, theorbo - 2 violins, theorbo, organ
Trio sonatas by Henry Purcell and Matthew Locke.
4 performers: 2 violins, theorbo, bass viol
Sweeter than Roses
Songs by Henry Purcell and John Blow
3 performers: singer, theorbo, bass viol
Marin Marais was one of the most celebrated compoers at the court of Versailles and a master of the bass viol.
Suites for bass viol by Marais and solo theorbo music by Robert de Visee
Marais' extraordinary piece which goes through a variety of keys in the manner of an opera, the famous Sonnerie de Ste-Geneviève, and the
Sonate a la Maresienne.
3 performers: violin, theorbo, bass viol
Pieces en trio
Trio sonatas by Marais, Couperin and Rebel.
4 performers: 2 violins/flutes, theorbo, bass viol
Bach and Weiss
S L Weiss, the greatest German lutenist of the 18th century, visited J S Bach at his home in Leipzig, and Bach even arranged one of his lutenist friend's suites for harpsichord and violin (mistakenly attributed to him as BWV 1025).
This programme includes solo lute music and our own reconstructions of chamber works by Weiss, as well as the magnificent chaconne by Bach.
The guitar was an immensely popular instrument in the 19th century.
This programmes includes Beethoven's serenades op.25 and op.8 (arranged for guitar), Mauro Giuliani's duo for flute and guitar, a duo for violin and viola by Mozart and solo guitar pieces by Fernando Sor.
4 performers: flute, violin, viola, guitar
Theorbo, viola da gamba, and saxophone meet where the expressive harmonies of French baroque composer Marin Marais are foil to exhilarating Jazz improvisation, the hypnotic bass lines of Henry Purcell blend with the arabesques of Middle Eastern music and Bach and the Blues all mix together in an alchemical evening that promises to move and thrill audiences while defying categories of place and time.