Festival begins in five weeks: nocturnality
“Two people are walking through a bare, cold wood;
the moon keeps pace with them and draws their gaze.
The moon moves along above tall oak trees,
there is no wisp of cloud to obscure the radiance
to which the black, jagged tips reach up.”
So begins Richard Dehmel’s poem, Verklärte Nacht, which inspired Schoenberg’s extraordinary string sextet of the same name. That piece forms the epicentre of the late-night concert, Transfigured Night. We are delighted to be making our first visit to St John of Beverley RC Church at the North Bar for this special concert which closes the first day of the festival (Thursday 5th April).
Dehmel’s poetry also inspired two of the great songs in the repertoire, Befreit by Strauss and Gluckwünsch by Korngold, which outstanding soprano Katherine Broderick sings in the concert in a new arrangement featuring string sextet accompaniment.
Hear Katherine singing one of the most profound songs concerning sleep, Ivor Gurney’s ‘Sleep’:
Compline by candlelight
“Keep me as an apple of an eye;
Hide me under the shadow of thy wings.”
On the second day of the festival, Friday 6th April, we ‘bid the world goodnight’ with a service of Compline in St Mary’s Church sung by the choir of Jesus College Cambridge, our choir in residence for the festival.
St Mary’s will be a beautiful setting for this atmospheric service of night prayer. Take a virtual tour of her in resplendent sunlight here.
Don’t miss this opportunity to bask in a short service of quietness and reflection during a very busy few days in Beverley.
Late Night Lute
On Wednesday 4th April, renowned lutenist Matt Wadsworth treats Friends of the festival to a recital at a secret location in Beverley. See the support page our website for details of how to become a Friend of the festival.
Matt plays a programme of music by Dowland, Johnson, Kapsberger, and a new piece for solo theorbo called ‘The Miller’s Tale’ by Stephen Goss. His CD recording of Late Night Lute was released in 2017 to critical acclaim.
“The playing in this little theatre of shadows is of course ravishing throughout” wrote the reviewer in Gramophone magazine.
We are thrilled and proud to be welcoming wonderful artists of the calibre of Matt, Katherine and Jesus College Choir to Beverley for the festival in a few weeks.