Tuesday 19 March 2013

BREMF 2013

Brighton Early Music Festival 2013 (BREMF)
Brighton Early Music Festival (BREMF) has released details of their plans for 2013. There is music by Handel, Gesualdo, Byrd, Tallis, troubadors and trouveres.  Drama makes a feature with adaptations of a Sarah Dunnant novel, and Clare Norburn's new drama on Gesualdo. There are masterclasses before the main festival led by Emma Kirkby, Belinda Sykes and others, leading to performance in festival events. And, as ever, the singers of the BREMF Consort of Voices and the BREMF Singers are busy.

Joglaresa will be making a welcome re-appearance, opening the festival with a programme, Songes of Sinne and Subversion exploring links between the songs from the Crusades and the present day. Beforehand Belinda Sykes will be leading a workshop which will lead to participation in the concert.

Emma Kirkby and Jacob Heringman are leading a masterclass in lute duos, and will then be performing a concert where they are joined by participants in the masterclass.

The BREMF Consort of Voices will be joined by Chantage, winners of Choir of the Year in a programme of Byrd and Tallis temptingly entitled Shades of Spem in Alium (there is a workshop on Spem in Alium on 28 September). BREMF Consort of Voices will also join Musica Secreta to present an adaptation of Sarah Dunnant's novel In the Company of the Courtesan. 

The Marian Consort and the Celestial Sirens will be joined by an actor for a presentation of Clare Norburn's new drama about the extraordinary life and music of Carlo Gesualdo.

Red Priest return with a programme of Handel. Medieval group The Telling explores courtly love with the songs of the troubadors and trouveres. Other groups performing will be Philomel, Trio Goya, L'vventura and of course artists from BREMF's Early Music Live scheme.

The festival concludes with a performance of Bach's St. John Passion with the BREMF Players and Singers with soloists including Elin Manahan Thomas.

As ever, the programme is subject to funding. Last year the festival was unsuccessful with their Arts Council grant application, but did wonderfully well even so. This year, let us hope that the authorities see senses and help one of our liveliest and most community engaged of period music festivals.

BREMF 2013 runs from 25 October to 10 November 2013.

If you can't wait that long and live in the Brighton area, then the Brighton Consort (director Katie Thomas) are performing The Triumphs of Oriana, a programme of Elizabethan madrigals and lute solos in Henfield (20 April) and Lewes (21 April). And on 25 April, the BREMF Community Choir will be performing a concert of Spanish and Italian music at St Paul's Church, West Street, Brighton.

Further information on BREMF 2013 from the BREMF website.

Elsewhere on this blog:

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