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Come Life, Come Death, I Care Not: a musical tour of Jacobean London
St. Stephens Episcopal Church
Philadelphia, PA
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Come Life, Come Death, I Care Not: a musical tour of Jacobean London
Join us for our first concert of 2019!

Solo voice ensemble Les Canards Chantants join forces with Parthenia, a Consort of Viols, to perform music by English Renaissance composer Michael East.  

Curated by our colleagues at Parthenia, this program is a presentation of the rarely-heard Third Set of Bookes by English Renaissance composer Michael East.   This collection, first published in London in 1610, contain a surprising variety of music for voices and viols: charming neapolitans, madrigals and pastorales depicting the antics of nymphs and shepherds alongside sacred verse-anthem settings of the Psalms.  The book also contains eight remarkable fantasias for viol consort that may have been inspired by John Dowland's Lachrymae, and which, in the words of Parthenia's Rosamund Morley, seem to "form a cycle describing a transformative psychological journey from despair to love."  Sung and played in full, this book offers a feast of colors and textures, and paints a picture of the musical and poetic landscape of Michael East's London that is by turns whimsical, devotional, and experimental.


Julie Bosworth, soprano
Eric Brenner, countertenor
Janna Critz, mezzo soprano
Robin Bier, contralto
Jacob Perry, tenor
Graham Bier, bass

Les Canards Chantants is an American solo-voice ensemble performing renaissance polyphony, and praised for their elegant vocalism (Philadelphia Inquirer), finely tuned vocals, robust singing, emotional flexility, and sense of adventure (Broad Street Review), brilliant and moving programming (Early Music America), and liveliness and theatricality (Boston Musical Intelligencer).

Founded in England in 2011, Les Canards Chantants are now based in Philadelphia, where they are Ensemble in Residence at Glencairn Museum, and present concerts of renaissance polyphony at home and abroad.  Les Canards Chantants has toured in the UK, Germany, and China, where they headlined the inaugural festival of Western Early Music at the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing alongside Red Priest in 2016.  They have collaborated with Piffaro, ACRONYM, lutenist Jacob Heringman, lutenist Charles Weaver, and lute-viol duo Pellingmans Saraband, and in 2019 they look forward to sharing the stage with Parthenia Viol Consort, the Folger Consort and Arcadia Viols.

Innovative programs like 1.500 Surround Sound (an immersive polychoral experience), Dowlands Table (lute song choose-your-own-adventure) and Sex, Drugs and Madrigals (staged Italian madrigals) have cemented the ensembles reputation for daring and entertaining presentation in concert, and for engaging with the most unusual repertoire from the Renaissance.  Some of their quirkier side projects include an appearance on BBC One Countryfile singing illegal sixteenth century catholic polyphony, staging a flashmob performance of the music engraved on the Eglantine Table at Hardwick Hall, and teaming up with Brown University in lecture recitals on Michael Maiers 1618 musical-alchemical treatise Atalanta Fugiens.

Les Canards Chantants has recorded two CDs to date:  Two in the Bush, sacred vocal music from the Catholic underground in Reformation England, recorded in an historic family chapel with lutenist Jacob Heringman and lute-viol duo Pellingmans Saraband, and Giovanni Valentinis Secondo libro de madrigali (world premier recording) with baroque string band ACRONYM.


Beverly Au
Ros Morley
Larry Lipnik
Lisa Terry
Motomi Igarashi

The viol quartet PARTHENIA brings early music into the present with its repertoire that animates ancient and fresh- commissioned contemporary works with a ravishing sound and a remarkable sense of ensemble. These local early- music stars, hailed by The New Yorker and music critics throughout the world, are one of the brightest lights in New Yorks early-music scene. Parthenia is presented in concerts across America, and produces its own series in New York City, collaborating regularly with the worlds foremost early music specialists. The quartet has been featured in prestigious festivals and series as wide-ranging as Music Before 1800, the Harriman-Jewell Series, Maverick Concerts, the Regensburg Tage Alter Musik, the Shalin Lui Performing Arts Center, the Pierpont Morgan Library, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Yale Center for British Art, Columbia Universitys Miller Theatre, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Parthenias performances range from its popular touring program, When Music & Sweet Poetry Agree, a celebration of Elizabethan poetry and music with actor Paul Hecht, to the complete viol fantasies of Henry Purcell, as well as the complete instrumental works of Robert Parsons, and commissions and premieres of new works annually. Parthenia has recorded As it Fell on a Holie Eve - Music for an Elizabethan Christmas, with soprano Julianne Baird, Les Amours de Mai, with Ms. Baird and violinist Robert Mealy, A Reliquary for William Blake, Within the Labyrinth, and The Flaming Fire, with vocalist Ryland Angel and keyboard player Dongsok Shin. Parthenias newest CD release features composers Kristin Norderval, Frances White, and Tawnie Olson: Nothing Proved: New works for viols, voice, and electronics. More information about Parthenia is available at Parthenia is represented by GEMS Live! Artist Management and records for MSR Classics.


St. Stephens Episcopal Church (View)
19 S 10th St
Philadelphia, PA 19107
United States


Arts > Performance
Music > Choral
Music > Classical

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Non-Smoking: Yes!


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