’Sociable Harmony: Part-songs from Georgian London’
This programme explores the now-forgotten repertoire of part-songs which played a central part in fashionable music making in late-eighteenth-century England. Across the country, musical clubs met to perform catches and glees alongside feasting and drinking. This is a vast musical output in which London’s leading composers competed to outdo one another in charm, wit, and exuberance. Their subject matters ranged across nature, history, patriotism, sentiment, and comedy. These songs were the madrigals of the late eighteenth century, and it was a musical world to which Haydn was introduced during his stays in London.
‘Gropers into Antique Musick’: London’s original Academy of Ancient Music'
London was at the forefront of 18th-century revivals of ’ancient music’, pioneered by the Academy of Ancient Music founded in 1726. The Academy met as a musical club to perform and discuss music of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and music of their own day inspired by earlier styles, and they regarded such repertoire as an antidote to the fripperies of modern opera. Among the Italian composers who sent music for the Academy to savour and perform was Agostino Steffani, on whom the Academy bestowed the title of ‘President’. This programme presents Steffani’s Stabat mater, believed to have been composed specifically for the Academy in the stile antico, and other music - both ‘ancient’ and in ancient styles - collected by or sent to the academy from across Europe, including madrigals by Marenzio and Lassus, and motets by Palestrina, Victoria, and Lotti.
Programme of their latest CD The Sweetest Songs
Music from 17th-century Portugal – this programme will also be recorded later this year
A programme centring on the wonderful Lamentation settings by Fernando de Almeida
Programme 3 -
Music by Bird ( to mark the 400th anniversary of his death)
In 2023 Contrapunctus will offer several programmes of music by Byrd
Programma 4 - Motets from Italian composers
In 2022 Contrapunctus will release a CD with motets from seventeenth-century Italy, with music of Monteverdi, Legrenzi, Steffani, and Lotti.
Programme 5 - Programmes of previous recordings
Contrapunctus can also of course perform any of their previous CD programmes