A Choral Odyssey: The Origins of the Carol

16 December 2020 7.30pm This is an online programme Single episode ticket: £10 / Series ticket: £50 (6 programmes). Only one ticket needed per household

The fifth programme in our A Choral Odyssey series explores the origins of the carol – in its earliest form it was a round dance, more secular than sacred. Mediaeval carols were for everyone from festivities in the town square or village green to celebrations in church. We will demonstrate the way mediaeval carols have influenced musicians of more recent times especially the composer, Cecilia McDowall. We will set it in the context of the historic medieval Kent house Penshurst Place, and consider how Christmas – and carols – might have been celebrated historically. King Henry VIII used Penshurst as a hunting lodge and it is believed that he may well have spent Christmas there one year. Only the chorus survives of his carol Green grow’th the holly and for this programme Cecilia McDowall has specially composed the solo verses.

Performers

The Sixteen
Harry Christophers conductor
Simon Russell Beale presenter 

Programme

Anon Make we joy now in this fest
Anon
Angelus ad virginem
Anon
Nowell, nowell in Bethlehem
Anon
Salutation carol
Anon
Sweet was the song
King Henry VIII Green grow’th the holly
Walton
Make we joy now in this fest
Cecilia McDowall
Now may we singen
Cecilia McDowall
Of a Rose

Media