Rose Consort of Viols Huddersfield Project
The Rose Consort of Viols and mezzo soprano Clare Wilkinson were in residency at the University of Huddersfield in December 2010 in collaboration with the University Chamber Choir (director: John Bryan).
This culminated in a concert at the York Early Music Christmas Festival in which they presented programmes of music from Elizabethan and Jacobean England, including a rare opportunity to devise a performance of Byrd's Mass for Four Voices with viols, solo voices and chorus, as though in a private recusant household.
The York concert in particular gave students the important insight of working closely with experienced musicians in a professional environment, with several students taking solo roles alongside Clare Wilkinson. As well as performing together, Huddersfield University vocal students benefited from a masterclass led by Clare Wilkinson, exploring solo and ensemble singing, early pronunciation and communication skills; while student viol players were able to participate in a workshop led by Alison Crum, the leading viol teacher in the UK.
This project was co-funded by the NCEM and the University of Huddersfield.
'The University of Huddersfield Chamber Choir trip to NCEM in York was great. As students we had the rare opportunity to work for a professional organisation and were given the challenge of performing to a wider, more knowledgeable audience, not just to the usual audience of parents and friends. We also got to rehearse and perform with professional performers (Clare Wilkinson and the Rose Consort of Viols) who were really encouraging and friendly. It was a wonderful experience.' Hannah Saxon, student