Published: 7th August 2015
After a wonderful few months of concerts across the UK and Europe, including our debuts at the St Magnus International Festival in Orkney and for the Tage Alter Musik Regensburg, where we gave a late-night performance of our ‘An Emerald in a Work of Gold’ programme with the Rose Consort of Viols to an appreciative audience of nearly 1,000, we’re now looking ahead to a busy season of Autumn and Winter concerts.
In the meantime, we’re delighted to see two new CD reviews, one of our 2014 ‘Christmas with the Shepherds’ release and another of our upcoming ‘Loquebantur – Music from the Baldwin Partbooks’, which is released in early October. (more…)
Published: 10th December 2014
The first reviews of our latest disc, ‘Christmas with the Shepherds’, a collection of Festive music from Renaissance Rome by Jean Mouton, Cristobal de Morales and Annibale Stabile, are in: BBC Music Magazine gave the CD 4 and 5 stars, praising the ‘pleasing feeling for euphonious balances and forward momentum’ and commenting that ‘the works are mellifluously performed here by the seven members of the youthful Marian Consort, who shape the sinuous polyphony with winning pliability.’
Early Music Review calls the disc ‘another scholarly and musically superb disc, with a Christmas flavour – although fare of this quality deserves all-year delectation! Tuning and blend are exemplary, and tempi are well-judged to allow the glorious contrapuntal and antiphonal textures to glow. Recordings like this should be the basis of any serious music collection – go forth and get!’
Should you wish to follow this advice, copies are available here on our website on the recordings page!
"The Marian Consort’s performances deliver full value in terms of expressive range and sophistication. Pitch-perfect tuning and immaculately clean ensemble … add further to the attractions of this eminently listenable recital."
"You are left in no doubt of the agony of the crucifixion in the vocal and horn climax of the opening chorus of Stabat Mater ... intense and riveting."
"There’s earnest beauty in it and the instrumental playing on this recording is spot on – the Berkeley Ensemble under David Wordsworth clinches the balance of chaste, plaintive and urgent."
"The Marian Consort has built an enviable reputation for coolly poised and precisely balanced performances and indeed there are times here when the listener can only sit back and admire, seduced by the sheer beauty of sound."
"Singing one person to a part, the Marian Consort give sublimely refined, spacious and impeccably tuned performances."
"The Marian Consort’s background in early music pays dividends in their superb precision of pitch, impeccable rhythmic placing and beautiful diction … the lush harmonies that open [Judica me] are sumptuously delivered and beautifully recorded."
"Little is known about the 16th-century composer, except that his beautifully smooth polyphony was much admired ... As revealed with pellucid clarity by Rory McCleery’s young Marian Consort on this first recording devoted exclusively to Maillard, he was a subtly expressive composer."
"With two women in the group, they make no pretence at emulating what might have happened in the 16th century; but that lets them sing out with more freedom. So this is no-nonsense musicianship, but for all that thoroughly musical ... The unfussy performance helps the music enormously."
"The motets are more adventurous, declamatory and cleverly nuanced, with a recognisable house style. The Marian Consort produces a very pleasing sound."
"The most striking feature of this entertainingly varied collection is the consistently fresh, fruit-ripe tonal quality of the Marian Consort's singing … poised and flexible, the text responded to with notable insight and maturity."