Gloriana: Byrd, Britten and Dove

7 October 2017, 7.30pm
St Barnabas Church, Oxford
Elizabeth I - The Armada Portrait (detail)

We are excited to introduce our latest programme, Gloriana, contrasting music written for the Court of Elizabeth I with works written in the time of our own Queen. We will be joined by William Purefoy as counter-tenor soloist in the beautiful Italianate Romanesque church of St Barnabas in Jericho.

Several pieces are drawn from the Triumphs of Oriana, a collection assembled in 1601 to celebrate Elizabeth’s long reign; other Tudor works include O God that Guides the Cheerful Sun, a gracious birthday ode for Elizabeth by court favourite William Byrd.

From the reign of Elizabeth II the concert includes the lively Choral Dances by Britten, drawn from his opera Gloriana, which was written for the 1953 coronation celebrations. This is presented alongside the Oxford premiere of a new cantata by Jonathan Dove: Out of the Whirlwind. This thrillingly dramatic dialogue for countertenor and choir is written in homage to Britten’s own Rejoice in the Lamb. The central part of Job is sung by leading countertenor, William Purefoy, who will also be singing solo songs from the two eras.

Tickets cost £15 (£12 concessions, £5 students and under 18s), and will be available from Tickets Oxford (link to follow shortly), from the Oxford Playhouse (01865 305305), from members of the choir in advance, or on the door if there are any left ... we hope to see you there!