Stour Music 2018

22 June – 1 July 2018

As winter turns to spring, it is always a pleasure to think of summer evenings spent in the beautiful surroundings of Boughton Aluph Church. Once again, we are delighted to present ten concerts taking place, as usual, over the last two weekends in June, albeit this year just nudging into July. The festival opens with a concert given by the Chelys Consort of Viols, with the renowned early music singer Emma Kirkby and lutenist James Akers.

Stour Music audience enjoying sunshine and shade

The following evening there will be an opportunity to hear a rarely performed Masque, Venus & Adonis by Pepusch, performed by a distinguished group of soloists together with the orchestra and singers of The Harmonious Society of Tickle-Fiddle Gentlemen.

Two groups that have made regular appearances at Stour during the past thirty years will be making a welcome return to the festival in 2018.

The English Concert

The English Concert, founded by Trevor Pinnock, will be giving a programme ‘Masters of the Baroque’, and The King’s Singers, celebrating their 50th anniversary this year, will bring their unique blend of voices and immaculate intonation to a programme of renaissance masterpieces.

Previous visitors to the festival will be familiar with one of my favourite ensembles, The Gonzaga Band, led by the brilliant cornetto player Jamie Savan. Previously they have been constrained by the limitations of the Late Night Extra concerts, but this year they will be giving a full length programme of Venetian music for solo voice (the wonderful soprano Faye Newton), cornetts and violins.

The Late Night Extra concerts have always proved popular, and are an opportunity to introduce new artists to the public, and this year is no exception. One of those is the young recorder player Tabea Debus, hailed as ‘one of the most exciting young musicians in the early music world’. Another is the remarkable lutenist Matthew Wadsworth, who, in his ‘Late Night Lute’ programme, will playing music by Dowland, Johnson and Piccinini, and the ensemble Concentus VII, with a programme of Italian Sonatas & Cantatas. All will be appearing at Stour Music for the first time.

The final Sunday afternoon Choral Concert will be a chance to hear Purcell’s King Arthur, with its famous ‘Fairest Isle’ aria, the evocative Frost Scene and the rollicking ‘Harvest home’ chorus, performed by an outstanding group of soloists, with the Festival Choir and Orchestra.

Finally, just to remind you that General bookings will need to be done either by phone or online. Please look at the Booking Arrangements page for full details.

Mark Deller
Festival Director

This short video was recorded over the second weekend of the 2016 festival