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Christmas Comes But Once a Year.. and the Early Music Festival in York is Celebrating in Style with the Largest Festival to Date!

The 2010 York Early Music Christmas Festival, which runs from Thursday 2 - Saturday 11 December, is the most ambitious Christmas festival ever presented by the National Centre for Early Music with 12 concerts over 9 days encompassing a wide range of musical tastes from the entertaining brilliance of The Burning Bush led by Lucie Skeaping (NCEM Sun 5 Dec), to the pure voices of Stile Antico presenting their 'Tudor Music at Christmas' programme in one of the world's finest medieval buildings - the Chapter House of York Minster (Thurs 2 Dec).

The Festival, which draws in audiences from across the UK, promises a series of musical treats for all tastes with guest artists including the award-winning instrumental ensemble Florilegium with soprano Emma Kirkby and alto Sally Bruce Payne in a concert celebrating the 300th anniversary of Pergolesi's birth (University of York Fri 3 Dec); vocal specialists I Fagiolini bringing their characteristic elan and humour to their 'Christmas Dinner' programme (NCEM Mon 6 Dec); a Christmas Fiesta evoking the atmosphere of a gypsy encampment (complete with Flamenco dancers!) from Eclipse (NCEM, Thurs 9 Dec) and the European Union Baroque Orchestra directed by Lars Ulrik Mortensen (University of York Sat 11 Dec) bringing together baroque specialists from across the European community.  

Highlights also include an exhibition of artworks specially commissioned from Festival Artist Alfred Hackett on Thursday 2 December and a performance by the winners of the 2009 York Early Music International Young Artists Competition - Ensemble Meridiana (NCEM Sun 5 Dec).

Delma Tomlin, Director of the NCEM, said "in times of such economic uncertainty, we are delighted to report that ticket sales for the Festival are already proving to be exceptionally strong.  The Christmas Festival offers our audiences a musical retreat from the hassle of commercial activity in the company of some of the world's finest musicians. If you've not tried it, I can whole heartedly recommend you do!"

For full details of all events, please contact the National Centre for Early Music, St Margaret's Church, Walmgate, York YO1 9TL e mail  Telephone 01904 658338 or use our secure on-line booking system by logging on to

The York Early Music Christmas Festival is organised by the National Centre for Early Music [NCEM] with support from Arts Council England, Yorkshire.