19th January 2019 at 7.30pm

St Michael's Parish Church

Consort Singers

Tickets: Full - £14, Under 26 - £6

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The GESUALDO SIX is a vocal consort comprised of some of the UK’s finest young consort singers, directed by Owain Park. Formed in March 2014 for a performance of Gesualdo’s Tenebrae Responsories for Maundy Thursday in the chapel of Trinity College, Cambridge, the group went on to give over sixty performances around the United Kingdom and abroad in its first three years. Over this time, The Gesualdo Six further developed a passion for ensemble singing that for many of them stemmed from formative years as choristers in churches and cathedrals around the country.

The group will present a wonderfully varied programme of choral music ranging from the atmospheric and spiritual to the light hearted and tuneful. They travel from the renaissance to the present day and from sacred to secular with mastery. This concert features works from their debut album, English Motets, with highlights by William Byrd and Thomas Tallis, alongside pieces by Arvo Pärt and Eric Whitacre. This promises to be an evening to remember.

The Gesualdo Six regularly appears at festivals in the UK and around Europe, with forthcoming appearances scheduled this calendar year for The Netherlands, Poland, Kosovo, Belgium and Monaco. The ensemble recognises the importance of teaching, and regularly incorporates educational work into its activities, holding workshops for choirs and composers and giving concerts alongside local performers.

Whilst initially focusing on early music, concert programmes began to reflect a desire to include more modern repertoire and now renaissance polyphony is often juxtaposed with works by composers including György Ligeti and Joanna Marsh amongst others. In 2016, The Gesualdo Six successfully curated its first Composition Competition, supported by St John’s Smith Square and the Music Sales group of companies, attracting 174 entries from around the world.

The ensemble have recently released their debut recording of English renaissance polyphony,‘English Motets’ on Hyperion Records to critical acclaim.


Owain Park was born in Bristol, UK in 1993. He founded The Gesualdo Six in 2014 and maintains a busy schedule of conducting projects, working with ensembles including the BBC Singers, Cappella Cracoviensis, and Cambridge Chorale. His compositions are published by Novello and have been performed internationally by ensembles including the Tallis Scholars and the Aurora Orchestra. While at Cambridge University he studied composition and orchestration with John Rutter, before undertaking a Masters degree in composition.

 

Recent works include Antiphon for the Angels (2018) for Voces8 and Rachel Podger, and Footsteps (2017) for Tenebrae and Nigel Short, a piece conceived to be performed by young and amateur singers alongside the professional forces of Tenebrae. His chamber opera The Snow Child (2016) was performed over five nights at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and his compositions have won awards from organisations including the National Centre for Early Music, with his music regularly broadcasted on the BBC, Classic FM, and internationally. The Choir of Trinity College Cambridge included The Wings of the Wind (2015) in their tour programmes to the United States, Australia and Hong Kong, and will release an album of his music on Hyperion Records in September 2018.

 

Owain is a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists (FRCO), and was awarded the Dixon Prize for improvisation, having been Senior Organ Scholar at Wells Cathedral and Trinity College Cambridge. He is part of the quartet of Tenebrae Associate Artists, and has worked with ensembles including Polyphony, Gabrieli Consort, The Tallis Scholars, Dunedin Consort and Alamire.www.owainpark.co.uk