Renaissance and traditional folk music celebrating the turn of the seasons - crown the May Queen, dance around the maypole, pick apples in Linden Lea, shelter from cold winter’s ice - eat, drink and be merry!
In the Renaissance, composers took popular tunes and wrote sophisticated arrangements of them - William Byrd’s Sellengers Round in the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book, any number of settings of Browning or The Leaves be Green for viol consort. This programme takes that precedent and uses old settings of old tunes, new settings of old tunes, madrigals, and more recent folk songs, to tell the story of a whole year. The programme includes the madrigals All Creatures Now Are Merry Minded by John Bennet and Cold Winters’ Ice Is Dead And Gone by Thomas Weelkes, settings of The Leaves Be Greene by William Byrd and Henry Stonings, plus a new one of our own, the folk songs Scarborough Fair and Linden Lea, and consort music by Anthony Holborne with The Honie Suckle and Marigold, and John Ward’s fantasia Rondinella.
Here is our own arrangement of a tune called 'Strawberries and Cream' from
John Playford's English Dancing Master