An immersive 9-day music series, Spitalfields Music Festival marries early and contemporary music and find pathways between

André de Ridder: ‘It’s a great honour to be able to share this festival line-up with you and to have had the opportunity to continue to develop our vision for a 21st-century music festival, with the Spitalfields Music family.’

• Now in its 42nd year, Spitalfields Music Festival will once again bring artists, audiences and communities together to explore and share extraordinary music in the heart of East London between the 1 - 9 December 2018

• Curated by conductor André de Ridder, 2018’s festival is packed with extraordinary international artists and inspiring collaborations, celebrating classical music in its widest sense

• Following the smash-hit success of RPS award-winning Schumann Street in 2017, Unknown, Remembered fuses Handel’s brilliant operatic scena La Lucrezia with a new commission from Shiva Feshareki, inspired by lyrics from seminal Joy Division album Unknown Pleasures, alongside Turner-nominated artist Haroon Mirza’s film installation The Last Tape featuring actor Richard Strange. This immersive, site-specific project runs across the festival at a warehouse turned nightclub in Hackney Wick

• Soprano Mary Bevan joins Europe’s preeminent lute player Elizabeth Kenny and cellist Joseph Crouch for a solo recital of Purcell and his Baroque contemporaries, followed by a performance from The Coveryard, a collective of arrangers and multi-instrumentalists led by Josephine Stephenson and Sarah Latto. The Coveryard’s composition interweaves songs from iconic Manchester rock band The Smiths with new arrangements of Purcell, shapeshifting between chamber band and a capella vocal ensemble to explore veins of English melancholy through this kaleidoscope of musical genres

• The Odyssean Ensemble presents sacred motets by William Byrd in the chapel of the Tower of London chapel, with a programme highlighting Byrd’s struggle as a Catholic during the religious storms of the Reformation

• In the striking location of Trinity Buoy Wharf on the Docklands where buoys, beacons and lighthouses have been designed and manufactured from the 16th century, The Riot Ensemble return to Spitalfields Music Festival with a programme of work by some of Canada’s most exciting contemporary composers including Richard Reed Parry (from Grammy Awardwinning band Arcade Fire) for his Music for Heart and Breath with instrumentalists connected to stethoscopes and playing to the rhythms of their own heartbeats, Christopher Mayo’s Beast and Nicole Lizée’s Black Midi

• Get ringside seats to a concert celebrating cutting-edge contemporary British composers Anna Meredith and Shiva Feshareki alongside Stravinsky’s masterpiece The Firebird Suite. Expect a site specific, surround-sound orchestra and a guest appearance by soloist Jörgen van Rijen, conducted by André de Ridder at York Hall in Bethnal Green, the home of British boxing

 

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