Arguably, some of the most thrilling sounds in music come from the time of the Renaissance – humble and spare yet triumphant and textured, there is spectrum of aesthetics that ranges from purely vocal a capella works to richly textured polyphonic brass canzoni. This music is so ageless that some of it could pass for having been composed in our times.
The Choir of St James’, King Street, and Australian Baroque Brass will take you back to Christmas during one of the cultural peaks in our history with A Renaissance Christmas. In a mystical mix of sublime Renaissance classics, A Renaissance Christmas presents music in a variety of styles inspired by the Christmas story. Fanfare-like brass chorales contrast with purely vocal Renaissance music, laden with sumptuous contrapuntal arches.
The programme includes works by the princes of Renaissance music – Palestrina’s Missa Hodie Christus Natus Est (Mass based on ‘Christ is born this day’), Victoria’s Quem Vidistis Pastores, Lasso’s Tui Sunt Caeli and favourite carols of Michael Praetorius.
The choir and instrumentalists will together perform Gabrieli’s O Magnum Mysterium. The musicians of Australian Baroque Brass will be showcased in a performance of Canzonas by Frescobaldi. Their unique sound and interpretation of Renaissance music lies in their use of period-style instruments which largely relies on physical skill rather than pressing keys or using valves to alter pitch.
If you go to the concert you can have not, one but two bites of the cherry, as the concert will be recorded for future broadcast by ABC Classic FM, for whom both ensembles have performed and made recordings.
Tickets: Book online at www.cityrecitalhall.com;
Or call 8256 2222. Concessions available.