Friday, 20 October 2017

Quartet New Generation (QNG)


 Link to the main site of the Quartet New Generation                 

Published on 24 Nov 2010
QNG Quartet New Generation playing Kung recorders at Greenwich 2010 - in their concert and the Makers Recital (The Early Music Festival)

Quartet New Generation (QNG) was a group of four female recorder players. Andrea Guttmann, Petra Wurz (replacing Hannah Pape in 2010), Heide Schwarz (since 2003) and Susanne Fröhlich performed on recorder instruments of many different kinds and shapes and combined Early and Contemporary music.
The quartet was founded in September 1998 at the Amsterdam Conservatoire with a main interest in contemporary music. Since then they worked together with composers. Many new works were written for the quartet. In April 2014 the quartet performed its jubilee concert (15 years QNG) at BKA theater in Berlin, which was also its last concert. The group has disbanded.

Prizes and Awards[edit]

  • 2002 Stipendienpreis German Music Award, Bonn
  • 2002 Musicprize of the Union Deutscher ZONTA-Clubs.
  • 2002 1st Prize at the 13ème Concours international de Musique de Chambre in IllzachFrankreich
  • 2003 1st Prize in the Category Quartett/Quintett, Gaudeamus Preis for the best interpretation of a work by a composer from the Netherlands and Grand Prix at the "7th International Competition for Contemporary Music" in CrakowPoland.
  • 2004 1st Prize at the "International Concert Artists Guild Competition 2004" in New York.
  • 2006 Preisträger German Music Award, Bonn
  • 2010 Winner of the competition Göttinger Reihe Historischer Musik, Performance Prize at the 2010 Göttingen International Handel Festival.


  • Ethereal, 2006, Edition Zeitklang
  • in vain – von der Vergänglichkeit, 2008, Edition Genuin
  • Fantasy 'n' Symmetry, 2012, Genuin Classics


A XXI Century Renaissance Piece by Eduardo Antonello

Early Music in a different way ;)Early Music in a different way ;)Early Music in a different way ;)Early Music in a different way ;)Early Music in a different way ;)Early Music in a different way ;)

Eduardo Antonello is a brilliant young musician in the field of Early Music. The link is an example of Contemporary Early Music which is well worth listening too. His youtube site is at

Published on 31 Jul 2016
If we can´t go back to the Renaissance Period, why not imagine at least those people dancing a XXI Century Renaissance piece?

I can´t promise i´m completely back but i really hope you enjoy my new video (i don´t know when i will be able to post a new one).

It´s a piece for crumhorn consort, viol consort, hurdy-gurdy and continuo (harpsichord) composed, played, recorded and edited by me. Enjoy! Please Like it! :)

Harpsichord built by Cesar Ghidini
Bass viol after Tielke by Fernando Ferreira

 Early Music in a different way ;) Early Music in a different way ;) Early Music in a different way ;) Early Music in a different way ;) Early Music in a different way ;)Early Music in a different way ;)







Early Music in Contemporary Session

Free composition created on Linux by Sonja Busch
Instruments: Harpsichord I - Harpsichord II - Drawbar Organ - Oboe - English Horn - Trumpet
Image by Pascal Hallou


Also..... Double Fugue Var on Pachelbel

Created on Linuy by Sonja Busch
Instruments: Harpsichords and Piano


Wednesday, 11 October 2017

P.D.Q. Bach

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Peter Schickele as P. D. Q. Bach, from the cover of The Definitive Biography of P. D. Q. Bach
P. D. Q. Bach is a fictitious composer invented by musical satirist "Professor" Peter Schickele. Schickele developed a five-decade-long career, performing the "discovered" works of the "only forgotten son" of the Bach family. Schickele's music combines parodies of musicological scholarship, the conventions of Baroque and classical music, and slapstick. The name "P. D. Q." is a parody of the three-part names given to some members of the Bach family that are commonly reduced to initials, such as C. P. E., for Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach. PDQ is an initialism for "pretty damned quick".
Schickele began working on the character while studying at the Aspen Music Festival and School and at Juilliard,[1] and has performed a variety of P. D. Q. Bach shows over the years. The Village Voice mentions the juxtaposition of collage, bitonality, musical satire, and orchestral surrealism in a "bizarre melodic stream of consciousness". "In P.D.Q. Bach he has single-handedly mapped a musical universe that everyone knew was there and no one else had the guts (not simply the bad taste) to explore."[2] As of 2012 he has decreased touring due to age. He performed two concerts to commemorate the 50th anniversary of his first concert at The Town Hall in New York on December 28 and 29, 2015,[3] and continues to have live concert performances.[4]


Schickele gives a humorous fictional biography of the composer[5] according to which P. D. Q. Bach was born in Leipzig on April 1, 1742,[6] the son of Johann Sebastian Bach and Anna Magdalena Bach; the twenty-first of Johann's twenty children.[5] He is also referred to as "the youngest and oddest of Johann Sebastian’s 20-odd children."[7] He died May 5, 1807,[8] though his birth and death years are often listed on album literature in reverse, as "(1807–1742)?".[9] According to Schickele, P. D. Q. "possessed the originality of Johann Christian, the arrogance of Carl Philipp Emanuel, and the obscurity of Johann Christoph Friedrich."[5](p23)


Schickele's works attributed to P. D. Q. Bach often incorporate comical rearrangements of well-known works of other composers. The works use instruments not normally used in orchestras, such as the bagpipes, slide whistle, kazoo, and fictional or experimental instruments such as the pastaphone (made of uncooked manicotti),[10] tromboon,[11] hardart, lasso d'amore,[12] and left-handed sewer flute.

There is often a startling juxtaposition of styles within a single P. D. Q. Bach piece. The Prelude to Einstein on the Fritz, which alludes to Philip Glass' opera Einstein on the Beach, provides an example. The underlying music is J.S. Bach's first prelude from The Well-Tempered Clavier, but at double the normal speed, with each phrase repeated interminably in a minimalist manner that parodies Glass's. On top of this mind-numbing structure is added everything from jazz phrases to snoring to heavily-harmonized versions of "Three Blind Mice" to the chanting of a meaningless phrase ("Koy Hotsy-Totsy," alluding to the art film Koyaanisqatsi for which Glass wrote the score). Through all these mutilations, the piece never deviates from Bach's original harmonic structure.[13]
The humor in P. D. Q. Bach music often derives from violation of audience expectations, such as repeating a tune more than the usual number of times, resolving a musical chord later than usual or not at all, unusual key changes, excessive dissonance, or sudden switches from high art to low art.[14] Further humor is obtained by replacing parts of certain classical pieces with similar common songs, such as the opening of Brahms' Symphony No. 2 with "Beautiful Dreamer", or rewriting Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture as the 1712 Overture, with Yankee Doodle replacing Tchaikovsky's melody, and Pop Goes the Weasel replacing La Marsellaise.

Compositional periods[edit]

Schickele divides P. D. Q. Bach's fictional musical output into three periods: the Initial Plunge, the Soused Period, and Contrition. During the Initial Plunge, P. D. Q. Bach wrote the Traumerei for solo piano, an Echo Sonata for "two unfriendly groups of instruments", and a Gross Concerto for Divers Flutes, two Trumpets, and Strings. During the Soused (or Brown-Bag) Period, P. D. Q. Bach wrote a Concerto for Horn & Hardart, a Sinfonia Concertante, a Pervertimento for Bicycle, Bagpipes, and Balloons, a Serenude, a Perückenstück (literally German for "Hairpiece"), a Suite from The Civilian Barber (spoofing Rossini's The Barber of Seville), a Schleptet in E-flat major, the half-act opera The Stoned Guest (the character of "The Stone Guest" from Mozart's Don Giovanni), a Concerto for Piano vs. Orchestra, Erotica Variations (Beethoven's Eroica Variations), Hansel and Gretel and Ted and Alice, an opera in one unnatural act (Humperdinck's Hansel and Gretel and the 1969 film Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice), The Art of the Ground Round (Bach's The Art of Fugue), a Concerto for Bassoon vs. Orchestra, and a Grand Serenade for an Awful Lot of Winds and Percussion.[5]
During the Contrition Period, P. D. Q. Bach wrote the cantata Iphigenia in Brooklyn (Gluck's Iphigenia in Aulis, etc.), the oratorio The Seasonings (Haydn's The Seasons), Diverse Ayres on Sundrie Notions, a Sonata for Viola Four Hands,[15] the chorale prelude Should, a Notebook for Betty Sue Bach (Bach's Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach and Buddy Holly's "Peggy Sue"), the Toot Suite, the Grossest Fugue (Beethoven's Grosse Fuge), a Fanfare for the Common Cold (Copland's Fanfare for the Common Man) and the canine cantata Wachet Arf! (Bach's Wachet auf).[5]
A final work is the mock religious work Missa Hilarious (Beethoven's Missa Solemnis) (Schickele no. N2O – the chemical formula of nitrous oxide or "laughing gas").[16]


Tromboon detail; the bassoon reed is on the left
The tromboon is a musical instrument made up of the reed and bocal of a bassoon, attached to the body of a trombone in place of the trombone's mouthpiece. It combines the sound of double reeds and the slide for a distinctive and unusual instrument. The name of the instrument is a portmanteau of "trombone" and "bassoon". The sound quality of the instrument is best described as comical and loud.
The tromboon was developed by Peter Schickele, a skilled bassoonist himself, and featured in some of his live concert and recorded performances. Schickele called it "a hybrid – that's the nicer word – constructed from the parts of a bassoon and a trombone; it has all the disadvantages of both".[17][18] This instrument is called for in the scores of P. D. Q. Bach's oratorio The Seasonings,[19] as well as the Serenude (for devious instruments) and Shepherd on the Rocks, With a Twist.[citation needed]


On Vanguard
Peter Schickele Presents an Evening with P. D. Q. Bach (1807–1742?)1965
An Hysteric Return: P. D. Q. Bach at Carnegie Hall1966
Report from Hoople: P. D. Q. Bach on the Air1967
The Stoned Guest1970
The Intimate P. D. Q. Bach1974
Portrait of P. D. Q. Bach1977
Black Forest Bluegrass1979
Liebeslieder Polkas1980
Music You Can't Get Out of Your Head1982
A Little Nightmare Music1983
On Telarc
1712 Overture and Other Musical Assaults1989
Oedipus Tex and Other Choral Calamities1990
WTWP Classical Talkity-Talk Radio1991
Music for an Awful Lot of Winds and Percussion1992
Two Pianos Are Better Than One1994
The Short-Tempered Clavier and Other Dysfunctional Works for Keyboard1995
P. D. Q. Bach and Peter Schickele: The Jekyll and Hyde Tour2007
TitleRecord companyYear
The Wurst of P. D. Q. BachVanguard Records1971
The Dreaded P. D. Q. Bach CollectionVanguard Records1996
The Ill-Conceived P. D. Q. Bach AnthologyTelarc Records1998
Video releases
The Abduction of Figaro1984
P. D. Q. Bach in Houston: We Have a Problem!2006
The Definitive Biography of P.D.Q. Bach1996


Four of the Telarc P. D. Q. Bach recordings received Grammy awards in the Best Comedy Recording category. These were the four albums released from 1989 until 1992.[20] Schickele also received a Grammy nomination in the Best Comedy Album category in 1996 for his abridged audiobook edition of The Definitive Biography of P. D. Q. Bach.[21]

See also[edit]


  1. Jump up ^ Schlueter, Paul. "P. D. Q. Bach satirist a seriously good humor man". Retrieved March 12, 2015. 
  2. Jump up ^ Gann, Kyle. "Classical Trash". Village Voice. Retrieved 2016-02-21. 
  3. Jump up ^ "Peter Schickele Brings P. D. Q. Bach Back to the Stage" by James R. Oestreich,The New York Times, December 16, 2015
  4. Jump up ^ "Peter Schickele Concert Schedule". Retrieved 20 February 2016. 
  5. ^ Jump up to: a b c d e Schickele, Peter. The Definitive Biography of P. D. Q. Bach
  6. Jump up ^ Schickele, Peter. The Definitive Biography of P. D. Q. Bach, page 3: "the night of the 1st of April, 1742," "giving birth to his twenty-first child," "at one minute after midnight"
  7. Jump up ^ "Peter Schickele: 50 Years of P.D.Q. Bach: A Triumph of Incompetence!". Corning Civic Music Association. Retrieved 31 August 2017. 
  8. Jump up ^ "P.D.Q. Bach Bio". Retrieved 20 February 2016. 
  9. Jump up ^ "An Evening With P.D.Q. Bach (1807-1742)?". Retrieved 20 February 2016. 
  10. Jump up ^ Blau, Eleanor (25 December 1998). "Oh, No! Still More (Quite a Bit More!) From P. D. Q. Bach". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 August 2012. 
  11. Jump up ^ Tromboon at Dolmetsch Music Dictionary
  12. Jump up ^ Lasso d'amore at Dolmetsch Music Dictionary
  13. Jump up ^ Gann, Kyle (19 January 1999). "Classical Trash". The Village Voice. Retrieved 14 December 2015. 
  14. Jump up ^ David Huron (2004). "Music-engendered laughter: an analysis of humor devices in PDQ Bach" (PDF). Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Music. pp. 700–704. 
  15. Jump up ^ The term four hands refers to the playing of one instrument, most commonly a piano, by two players at once.
  16. Jump up ^ "Portrait of P. D. Q. Bach". The Peter Schickele Web Site. Retrieved 14 December 2015. 
  17. Jump up ^ "P. D. Q. Bach & Peter Schickele: The Jekyll and Hyde Tour". Retrieved 13 November 2008. 
  18. Jump up ^ Dr David Shevin (5 August 2004). "A Viva For Elizabeth Lands". Retrieved 13 November 2008. 
  19. Jump up ^ "The Seasonings, Oratorio for Soprano, Alto, Tenor, and Bass Soloists, SATB Chorus, and Orchestra by P. D. Q. Bach [Peter Schickele]", in Notes, Second Series, Vol. 30, No. 4 (June 1974), pp. 863–864. Last accessed 7 June 2008 (subscription required)
  20. Jump up ^ Biography page for Peter Schickele on Theodore Press Company's website
  21. Jump up ^ Past Winners Database page for the 1996 Grammy award nominees and winners on the Los Angeles Times website

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Purcell's Revenge

Blogger's Ref/ A Treasury of Early Music

Ref Music Web International

Henry PURCELL (1659-1695)
Purcell’s Revenge; Sweeter than Roses?
Moonlight on the Green by James Oswald / Scotch Tune (Purcell, Amphitryon, Z572) [2:14]
There’s not a swain on the plain (Rule a Wife and Have a Wife, Z 587), arr. Olivia Chaney [4:21]
Rondeau (Abdelazer, Z570) [1:48]
An Evening Hymn, Z193, arr. Ana Silvera [3:56]
Fantazia in four parts, No. 11 in G, Z742 [2:59]
A New Scotch Tune, Z655: Peggie I must love thee (Balcarres Lute Book) [2:12]
Sweeter than roses (Pausanias, Z585), arr. David McGuinness [3:25]
First Music: Hornpipe (The Fairy Queen, Z629) [1:01]
Fairest isle (King Arthur, Z628) [3:44]
Old Sir Simon the King (The Division Violin / Second Part of Musick’s Hand-maid) [3:54]
Jigg (Second Part of Musick’s Hand-maid) [0:57]
One charming night (The Fairy Queen) [3:42]
Close thine eyes, Z184, Jigg (Abdelazer) [3:06]
Music for a while (Oedipus, Z583) [3:42]
Cassiopeia - Olivia Chaney [4:11]
Halos - Ana Silvera [3:43]
The Plaint (The Fairy Queen) [6:01]
What shall I do to show how much I love her (Dioclesian, Z627) and variations by James Oswald, arr. David McGuinness [3:48]
Aminta one night had occasion to piss, Z430, arr. David McGuinness [2:22]
Hornpipe on a Ground (The Married Beau, Z603) [3:00]
Concerto Caledonia/David McGuinnessl Performers:
rec. 2013, Britten Studio, Snape, UK
Texts included
DELPHIAN DCD34161 [66:04]
This is a playful and occasionally exasperating disc from Concerto Caledonia under David McGuinness. Straight-ahead, no-nonsense Purcellians will be aghast at some of the things inflicted on their hero whilst the more broad-minded may well welcome the serious and indeed funnier moments - whilst also privately wondering why it all doesn’t work rather better than it does.

Given their folk basis the ensemble could hardly be expected to take an Academy of Ancient Music approach and the infusion of lyra d’amore, hurdy-gurdy, Nyckelharpa and harmonica will give you some idea of the sound-world explored by the group. There’s not a swain on the plain with its vocal folk ethos and ensuing expansive instrumental shows how the group wants to marry the Purcellian idiom to its own sonically inclusive one but it can be a dangerous business. An Evening Hymn is de-ground bassed, as it were, and turned, kicking and screaming, into a winsome ballad, with Ana Silvera’s vowels not sounding especially English. It strikes me, then, as strange that, having established their credentials here in a kind of folk-baroque concept album, they should then decide to invite a proper singer of such music, James Bowman, to join them in a couple of numbers. As we can hear in Sweeter than Roses his voice is now well, well past its best and his musicality, never to be doubted, is little compensation. Is the use of Bowman to offer ‘real’ Purcell or to acquire some kind of legitimacy for the project? I’m undecided.

Fairest Isle is folked, much as the Classics were Jazzed in the 1930s, or Loch Lomond swung but whilst the latter two worked, this doesn’t. It sounds limp. Still, if you’ve yet to encounter a harmonica over hurdy-gurdy then listen to the Jigg. One Charming Night however takes us to the verge of Rock chamber opera – electric guitar, piano, and then quite a melancholy folkloric dénouement with much rusticity in the vocalising.

I’ve enjoyed a couple of this ensemble’s discs before and I appreciate that as suppliers of so-called Nu-Folk (what’s wrong with ‘New Folk’?) they plough their own furrow. Some things are effective, especially that nexus between the more Arcadian aspects of Purcell’s writing and the rural-folk inspirations on which the ensemble draw. But too much of the singing also draws upon the clichés of the genre and I don’t necessarily mean, for instance, the elongated vowels that turn the word ‘safe’ into ‘sayyyyyfe’.

The documentation is excellent and there are some splendid photographs. Most of the performances are live but a couple come from the studio. Sample firrrrst.

Jonathan Woolf

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

TV Themes...

  A Treasury of Early Music

TV themes which appear to have drawn something of their inspiration from Early Music.

Georges Delerue Thibaud Ou Les Croisades (1968)

The Shadow of the Tower about the reign of Henry VII (excellent drama especially the actor who played the King)

The theme of the Accursed Kings again written by Delerue

The ITV version of the classic Black Arrow. At present we do not have the full theme "song" of this series;.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Cristóbal de Morales - Parce mihi Domine - Hilliard Ensemble

A Treasury of Early Music

Jan Garbaret and the Hilliard Ensemble  Parce mihi saxophone...

The original Parce mihi domine............sans saxophone

The Hilliard Ensemble: Sax in the Middle Ages

The Hilliard Ensemble and Jan Garbarek talk to Adam Sweeting about blending music ancient and modern . 


Is it possible that the Hilliard Ensemble have solved the conundrum of circular time? Though their recorded catalogue is peppered with titles such as Popular Music from the Time of Henry VIII or Medieval English Music, and the quartet can sing Byrd or Josquin des Prez with rare expertise, they’ve been performing sizzlingly contemporary music since their earliest performances in the mid-Seventies. They’ve become closely associated with composers such as Arvo Pärt and Giya Kancheli, but it’s their still-evolving partnership with Norwegian jazz saxophonist Jan Garbarek that has brought them unexpectedly huge numbers of new listeners.

Their first collaboration, in 1994, was on a CD called Officium. Though it comprised exclusively early music, the mix of the Hilliards’ transcendent harmonising and Garbarek’s free-floating improvisations created something not quite categorisable. They thought it might sell a few hundred copies, s,o, when it did a million and a half the air was filled with the sound of jaws hitting the floor.
And it’s with Garbarek that the Hilliard Ensemble launches a tour of British cathedrals in Norwich on Saturday . The performance will be based on their third collaborative CD, Officium Novum, released last year on the ever-exploratory ECM label. It’s a mesmerising collection, encompassing music from 16th-century Spain alongside Russian and Armenian church music and new pieces by Pärt and Garbarek himself, all framed within the shimmering sound world the musicians concoct when they play together.

Garbarek gives much credit for the collaboration to ECM’s mastermind, Manfred Eicher. “Manfred asked us if we would like to do something together, and we were both curious and really open about trying it,” the saxophonist recalls. “We found this monastery in Austria, St Gerold’s. The Hilliards brought a batch of music, they chose one and started to sing, and I listened for a minute and then played along with them. It was very quick and spontaneous, which to me meant that it was the right thing to do.”

A few months later, they found some mutually agreeable dates and, with Eicher producing, returned to St Gerold’s and recorded their first disc in a couple of days.
Wisely, they have allowed the collaboration to develop in its own time. A second collection, the two-disc Mnemosyne, followed in 1999, on which the musicians stretched themselves across several more centuries and folk music from different continents.

Then more than a decade elapsed before Officium Novum eventually emerged, though the partnership had been expanding and deepening in the interim over the course of myriad live performances.

“We’ve always done a lot of concerts with Jan, and we’re always looking for new music to keep it interesting for ourselves and find new ideas,” says tenor Steven Harrold, the new boy in the Hilliard Ensemble after joining a mere dozen years ago. In a history going back more than 35 years, the Hilliards have had only five personnel changes, though countertenor David James is the sole survivor from the first line-up.

“The question was whether we had a sufficient body of music of the right type to make the album work,” adds baritone Gordon Jones. “Certainly, I was very reluctant to do another album just for the sake of it. There had to be some damn good reason.”

A recording is only ever a snapshot of how something sounded at a particular moment, albeit with some technical tweaking to make it sound as aurally ravishing as possible, but what the Hilliards and Garbarek particularly cherish about their music-making is the way it varies from concert to concert, depending on choice of material and the physical properties of the venue.

“In the concerts, we’ve introduced pieces with lots of improvisation from the Hilliards as well as myself,” says Garbarek. “We never captured the best moments of that on any tape, but I think it made our collaboration develop more strongly. It’s very inspiring for me to work with them.”
Tenor Rogers Covey-Crump adds: “Jan responds very strongly to the buildings we play in. One thing he loves about this project is that he gets to play in places he never otherwise sees, such as big churches and cathedrals.”

“In a big resonant acoustic, he can create a harmony by playing a really loud bass note and then adding an arpeggio above it, so you have this harmony hanging in the air,” says Gordon Jones.
Garbarek’s early adventures in improvised music were inspired by the frantic honkings and squawkings of free-jazzers such as Archie Shepp and Albert Ayler, though over the decades he has learned what to leave out to find the meaningful spaces within.

“That’s very true,” he says. “Now I go for a more transparent sound, not the 'sheets of sound’ that John Coltrane introduced. I had to find my musical voice in the way that Coltrane found his, and the way he developed his spirituality through his music is very interesting to me.”

Spirituality is surely a characteristic of the music Garbarek makes with the Hilliards, as they spin through the centuries to reach some sort of irreducible expressive core. It’s hard to put into words, but something about it speaks clearly to its listeners.

“It’s very important that the sound has a certain amount of space and reverberation,” says Garbarek. “The music often uses modal forms, which gives a lot of freedom for improvisation. Some of it’s religious music and some isn’t, but I think it’s important that all music should be spiritual in some way.” 

A self-portrait by Nicholas Hilliard (1577)

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The Hilliard Ensemble was a British male vocal quartet originally devoted to the performance of early music. The group was named after the Elizabethan miniaturist painter Nicholas Hilliard. Founded in 1974,[1] the group disbanded in 2014.[2]
Although most of its work focused on music of the Medieval and Renaissance periods, the Hilliard Ensemble also performed contemporary music, working frequently with the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt and included in its concerts works by John Cage, Gavin Bryars, Giya Kancheli, and Heinz Holliger.

History and performances[edit]

The group was originally founded by Paul Hillier, Errol Girdlestone, Paul Elliott, and David James, although the membership was flexible until Hillier left in the late 1980s. Since 1990 the core members were David James (counter-tenor), Rogers Covey-Crump (tenor/high tenor), John Potter (tenor), and Gordon Jones (bass), with one change: in 1998 John Potter was replaced by Steven Harrold.
The Hilliard Ensemble, under Paul Hillier, had an extensive discography with EMI's Reflexe early music series during the 1980s. The ensemble has since recorded mainly for the ECM label. In 1994, when popular interest in Gregorian chant was at its height, the ensemble released the CD Officium, an unprecedented collaboration with the Norwegian saxophonist Jan Garbarek. The disc became one of ECM's biggest-selling releases, reaching the pop charts in several European countries and receiving five gold discs in sales. Officium's sequel, the 2-CD set Mnemosyne, followed in 1999. The third album, Officium Novum, was released in 2010.[3][4]
Their recordings have also been included in Craig Wright's Listening to Music textbook for music students and music appreciation.
In 2005 the ensemble took part in the Rheingau Musik Festival's composer's portrait of Arvo Pärt, together with the Rostock Motet Choir.[5]
In 2008, The Hilliard Ensemble premiered Heiner Goebbels' avant-garde staged concert I went to the house but did not enter at the 2008 Edinburgh International Festival, repeated at the Berliner Festspiele.[6]
In 2009 the ensemble premiered five new works: Guido Morini's Una Iliade, Fabio Vacchi's Memoria Italiana, Steffen Schleiermacher's Die Beschwörung der Trunkenen Oase, Simon Bainbridge's Tenebrae and Wolfgang Rihm's Et Lux.
In September 2010, The Hilliard Ensemble joined the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir for the world premiere of Matteo D'Amico's Flight from Byzantium at the Royal Festival Hall, London. They also performed three pieces by Guillaume Dufay: Moribus et genere, Vergene bella and Lamentatio sanctae matris ecclesiae Constantinopolitanae.[7]
On 15 November 2010 the group appeared at Church of St. Paul the Apostle in New York to perform Kjartan Sveinsson's Cage a Swallow Can’t You but You Can’t Swallow a Cage.[8]
The Hilliard Ensemble decided to disband after 41 years and gave their final concert on 20 December 2014 at London's Wigmore Hall.[2][9]

Selected discography[edit]

EMI Reflexe[edit]

  • 1980: Lionel Power: Messen und Motetten (LP, EMI Reflexe 1C 069-46 402)
  • 1982: John Dunstable: Motets (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49002 2)
  • 1983: Josquin Desprez: Motets and chansons (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49209 2)
  • 1983: Schütz: Matthäus-Passion (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49200 2)
  • 1984: J. S. Bach Motets (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49204 2) with Knabenchor Hannover
  • 1984: Ockeghem: Requiem; Missa Mi-Mi (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49213 2)
  • 1984: Palestrina: Canticum canticorum, Spiritual madrigals (EMI Reflexe CDS 7 49010 8)
  • 1985: Schütz: Schwanengesang (Opus ultimum) (EMI Reflexe CDS 7 49214 8) with London Baroque and Knabenchor Hannover
  • 1985: Lassus: Penitential Psalms (EMI Reflexe CDS 7 49211 8) with the Kees Boeke Consort
  • 1986: Dufay: Missa L'Homme armé, Motets (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 47628 2)
  • 1987: Draw on Sweet Night - English Madrigals (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49197 2)
  • 1988: Ockeghem: Missa prolationum and Marian Motets (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49798 2)
  • 1989: Josquin Desprez: Missa Hercules Dux Ferrariae (EMI Reflexe CDC 7 49960 2)


  • 1996: Perotin and the Ars Antiqua (HL 1001)
  • 1996: For Ockeghem (HL 1002) music by Ockeghem, Busnois and Lupi and translated excerpts from Lament on the Death of the Late Ockeghem by Guillaume Crétin
  • 1997: Antoine Brumel (HL 1003)
  • 1998: Guillaume Dufay - Missa Se la Face ay Pale (HL 1004)


  • 1986: Thomas Tallis: The Lamentations of Jeremiah (ECM 1341)
  • 1987: Arbos (ECM 1325) with the Staatsorchester Stuttgart Brass Ensemble under Dennis Russell Davies performing works of Arvo Pärt
  • 1988: Passio (ECM 1370) performing works of Pärt
  • 1989: Perotin (ECM 1385) performing works of Perotin
  • 1991: Tenebrae (ECM 1422-23)) performing works of Carlo Gesualdo
  • 1991: Miserere (ECM 1430) performing works of Pärt
  • 1993: The Hilliard Ensemble Sings Walter Frye (ECM 1476)
  • 1994: Officium (ECM 1525) with Jan Garbarek (Part 1 of the Officium-trilogy)
  • 1995: Codex Speciálník (ECM 1505)
  • 1996: A Hilliard Songbook - New Music for Voices (ECM 1614-15)
  • 1998: Lassus (ECM 1658) performing works of Orlande de Lassus
  • 1999: Mnemosyne (ECM 1700-01) with Jan Garbarek (Part 2 of the Officium-trilogy)
  • 2001: Morimur (ECM 1765) with Christoph Poppen
  • 2003: Ricercar (ECM 1774) with Christoph Poppen and Münchener Kammerorchester performing works of Bach and Weber
  • 2003: Tituli - Cathedral in the Thrashing Rain (ECM 1861) performing works of Stephen Hartke
  • 2004: Motets (ECM 2324) performing works of Guillaume de Machaut
  • 2005: Lamentate (ECM 1930) with Alexei Lubimov performing works of Pärt
  • 2007: Motetten (ECM 1875) performing works of Bach
  • 2008: Audivi Vocem (ECM 1936) performing works of Thomas Tallis, Christopher Tye and John Sheppard
  • 2010: Officium Novum (ECM 2125) with Jan Garbarek (Part 3 of the Officium-trilogy)
  • 2011: Song of Songs (ECM 2174) with the Rosamunde Quartett performing works of Boris Yoffe
  • 2012: Quinto Libro di Madrigali (ECM 2175) performing works of Gesualdo
  • 2013: Terje Rypdal: Melodic Warrior (ECM 2006)
  • 2013: Il Cor Tristo (ECM 2346) performing works of Roger Marsh, Bernardo Pisano and Jacques Arcadelt
  • 2014: Transeamus (ECM 2408)
  • 2015: Heinz Holliger: Machaut-Transkriptionen (ECM 2224) with Geneviève Strosser, Jürg Dähler and Muriel Cantoreggi


External links[edit]