National Centre for Early Music

[Skip navigation]
Navigation Menu

An Adventure Through Tallis


An Adventure Through Tallis
6th July 2019
10.00 - 16.00
York Cemetery Chapel, Cemetery Road 

The choral workshop has become a popular feature of the York Early Music Festival and provides choral singers with an opportunity to work with choral directors experts in the field of early music. This year we are delighted to welcome Rory Johnston to direct a day entitled 'An adventure through Tallis', an exploration of the change of English music through the 16th century.

With the constantly fluctuating political and religious situation in England over the course of the 1500s, church musicians had to adapt and innovate in order to keep their music acceptable to the prevailing monarchy. Being, arguably, the most influential English composer of the 16th century, this stylistic ebb-and-flow is especially prominent in the music of Thomas Tallis, whose life spanned the majority of the Tudors' time on the throne. In this workshop, we will look at music from the early periods of Tallis' compositional career along with pieces by Taverner and Faryfax, two likely influences on his early style. We then move on to the English anthems of the Reformation followed by the brief Catholic resurgence of 1553, and finally through to the music written during the reign of Elizabeth I, including a selection of the Tunes for Archbishop Parker's Psalter and music by Tallis' most notable student, William Byrd.

Rory directs a number of choirs across the North and is also the founder and Musical Director of the Manchester Renaissance Ensemble, a progressive collection of young professional singers and instrumentalists based in the North West striving to reimagine and recontextualise the often-forgotten gems of the Renaissance.

Registration Details

Date: Saturday 6 July 2018 10:00am - 4:00pm (Registration from 9.30am)

 Venue: Opened in 1837, York Cemetery is a Grade II* listed chapel, which places it amongst the 6% most important listed buildings in the United Kingdom. It was designed by the architect James Piggot Pritchett as a part of the original cemetery landscape. Pritchett based his design on the temple of Erectheus in Athens. Completed in 1838, the chapel is an excellent example of the late neo-classical style and is considered to be one of Pritchett's most successful commissions. It has a fine acoustic and is surrounded by award-winning landscaped grounds. Find a map here .

 The fee for the day, including loan of music (also available to purchase) and light refreshments is £18 (£10 students and observers) Tea coffee and biscuits are provided for morning and afternoon breaks - but please make your own arrangements for lunch. In an effort to eliminate the use of polystyrene cups you are asked, if possible to bring you own mug. A limited supply of compostable hot drinks cups will be provided at a charge of 10p.

Tickets available here  shortly. Please advise us of your voice type or if you are an observer and provide details of every singer if you are booking multiple places.