The Marian Consort Residency at the Department of Music

The Marian Consort Residency at the Department of Music

Internationally renowned vocal ensemble, The Marian Consort, will be giving a concert, a workshop and a world premiere at the Department of Music on the 11-12 November.

The Marian Consort present bold and thrilling performances across the UK, Europe and North America. Led by founder and director, Rory McCleery, the group is composed of the very best singers in a flexible, intimate ensemble, allowing clarity of texture and subtlety of interpretation that illuminates the music for performer and audience alike. They feature regularly on BBC Radio 3, and have released eleven recordings to critical acclaim, praised for ‘precision and pellucid textures’ (The Times). During their two-day residency at the Department of Music, they will give a concert in the chapel (more info here) and will give a workshop of new pieces by the department’s PhD composers under the watchful eye of composers Phillip Cooke and John De Simone. The concert will also feature a world premiere of a piece written for the ensemble by Cooke, entitled Canticum Mariae Virginis, which juxtaposes two texts, both regarding the Virgin Mary, but offering different yet complementary accounts of the Blessed Virgin. As well as pairing these texts, the piece also uses two different languages and two points of view in its six-minute duration. The piece blends the formal Latin of Cantemus in omni die, the earliest known Latin hymn to Mary originally composed in the Western Christian Church (written on Iona in the eighth century) with excerpts of the Magnificat in archaic Scots, taken from the sixteenth-century anthology the Bannatyne Manuscript. The visit of the Marian Consort builds on other recent visits from important groups such as the Dunedin Consort, Cappella Nova and the BBC Singers and cements the department’s position as one of the leading institutions for the study and dissemination of new choral music in the UK.

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