A 25th birthday calls for a rousing celebration, and we intend to mark it in suitable style. As we kick off a year of birthday events, we invite you to join us for an all-Bach extravaganza, with concerts pairing two of his most powerful and richly scored cantatas with some of his finest instrumental music. This is music of depth and solemnity but also of salvation and celebration, movingly performed by a cast of Dunedin Consort regulars and friends. Like all good birthdays, this one involves a great party. We hope you will join us afterwards at The Queen’s Hall for a slice of cake, a glass or two of bubbles and a late-night celebration.
Exquisitely restrained yet indescribably intense, Arvo Pärt’s Passio is a modern masterpiece. This hour-long setting of St John’s Gospel draws upon some of the earliest settings of the passion story to reframe and distil its message for modern listeners. Interpolating passages for solo voices and choral ensembles, we are never far away from familiar passion territory and yet, with Pärt’s characteristic vocal candour and pared-down orchestration, it is a work that somehow remains timeless. In a Dunedin Consort first, we are delighted to be joining forces with Hebrides Ensemble in presenting this meditative and inescapably moving work to audiences across Scotland.
Over the years, our celebrated interpretation of Bach’s Matthew Passion has earned us five-star reviews, coveted awards and taken us around the world. It has become one of the cornerstones of our season. But in 2020, for the first time in our history, the concert halls fell silent and our annual performances were cancelled. It was a strange and sombre Easter without Bach’s music for comfort.
This year, we return to Edinburgh and Perth with one of Bach’s most heart-rending works, a piece that feels more powerful now than ever. With that silent Easter behind us, we look forward to rejoicing once more in Bach’s glorious music, and its message of hope, togetherness and salvation.
Nicholas Mulroy director & tenor
Pippa Murphy composer
‘I encounter millions of bodies in my life; of these millions, I may desire some hundreds; but of these hundreds, I love only once…’
— Roland Barthes
In love, as in music, we find ourselves in a multitude of hazy, transcendental states, neither here nor there. ‘We are enchanted, bewitched: we are in the realm of sleep, without sleeping; we are within the voluptuous infantilism of sleepiness: this is the moment for telling stories.’ So says Roland Barthes in his sweeping and ecstatic examination of human love, A Lover’s Discourse. Join us for a unique and transformative experience, as we pair Barthes’ vivid recitations with madrigals by Monteverdi, Rore and Gesualdo, in a compelling multimedia performance bound together by Pippa Murphy’s evocative new score.
Please note, there will be no interval.
Dunedin Consort’s annual Messiah has become a staple of the festive season — Christmas just wouldn’t be complete without it. And in this year of all years, we all need the joy, splendour and sheer exhilaration that only Messiah can bring. While we are sorry to announce that our live performance plans for Edinburgh and Glasgow can no longer go ahead, we are thrilled to be partnering with Horsecross Arts to present a streamed performance from Perth Concert Hall.
Join us from the comfort of your own home (perhaps with a glass of wine and mince pie in hand!) as John Butt, soloists Mhairi Lawson, Jess Dandy, Anthony Gregory and Robert Davies, and our lithe orchestra and chorus treat us to a Messiah with a difference. Tickets cost just £10 per household, and the stream will be available for 30 days.
And for younger viewers, we hope you will tune in to our Children’s Messiah — specially crafted with little ears in mind! — on Tuesday 22nd December. Guided by Mr Handel himself, we’ll be whizzing through some of his greatest hits, with plenty of fun and games along the way. This stream will be available free of charge for 30 days.
Join us live and online for our Children’s Messiah — specially crafted with little ears in mind! Guided by Mr Handel himself, we’ll be whizzing through some of his greatest hits, with plenty of fun and games along the way. This stream will be available free of charge for 30 days.
Our Children’s Messiah performances are generously sponsored by Baillie Gifford.