An Elizabethan Christmas



In Nomine No 3
Out of the Orient 
In Nomine No 4
From Virgin’s womb
In Nomine No 5
An earthly tree, heavenly fruit 

Anthony Holborne
Pavan: The Cradle
Galliard: Lullabie

Byrd Lullaby

Holborne Galliard: As it fell on hole eve

Martin Peerson Upon my lap, my sovereign sits 

Gibbons In Nomine No 1

Anon Sweet was the song the virgin sang

Peerson Attendite

Thomas Weelkes To shorten Winter’s sadness 

Gibbons Fantazy a 4 ‘for ye great dooble bass’

Holborne Almain: The New Yeare’s Gift

Byrd O God that guides the cheerful sun

Yuletide in the Elizabethan era was a time of profound spirituality as well as celebration – and composers such as Byrd, Gibbons and Tallis composed some of the most timeless sacred music ever created in these islands. Tonight’s programme explores the grandeur, the emotion and the deep beauty that lay at the heart of Christmas festivities at the court of Elizabeth I.

Since its foundation in 1985, viol consort Fretwork has helped disseminate and renew a tradition of music formerly little known beyond a small band of specialists, its extraordinary standard of playing wedded to an approach to repertory that has seen it seek out forgotten music as well as commissioning new works from contemporary composers. Tonight, Fretwork are joined by mezzo-soprano Helen Charlston, winner of the Handel Singing Competition 2018, for a celebratory festive concert that journeys us back in time.

*Due to unforeseen circumstances, Elin Manahan Thomas will no longer be performing with Fretwork as previously advertised. Fretwork will now be joined by soprano Helen Charlston. Helen won First Prize in the 2018 Handel Singing Competition and is a Rising Star of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment for 2017-19.