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CONTACT: Kathleen Fay, Executive Director
617-661-1812 |

MEDIA ALERT: Legendary vocal ensemble The Tallis Scholars returns for their 23rd annual appearance with the Boston Early Music Festival on March 31, 2012.


The Tallis Scholars (United Kingdom)
Peter Phillips, director


Saturday, March 31, 2012 at 8pm
St. Paul Church, Bow & Arrow Streets
Harvard Square, Cambridge, MA


The Field of the Cloth of Gold: Music of Jean Mouton and William Cornysh

Jean Mouton: Nesciens mater
William Cornysh: Ave Maria
Mouton: Ave Maria
Mouton: Quaeramus cum pastoribus
Browne: Salve regina
Mouton: “Kyrie” and “Agnus dei” from the Missa Dictes moy toutes vos pensées
Mouton: Salva nos
Cornysh: Ah Robin
Cornysh: Woefully arrayed
Cornysh: Magnificat

TICKETS: Tickets priced at $19, $38, $49, and $66 each and can be purchased at WWW.BEMF.ORG and 617-661-1812; a $5 discount for students, seniors, and groups is offered by calling 617-661-1812.

Beloved vocal ensemble The Tallis Scholars with director Peter Phillips make their 23rd annual appearance with the Boston Early Music Festival. Pioneers in the performance of the glorious vocal music of the Renaissance, these singers continue to collect accolades for transcendent performances that are as intricately precise as they are expressively soulful. Their program is inspired by one of the most spectacular political summits of all time. In June, 1520, in the fields near Calais, Henry VIII of England and François I of France met to seal a treaty of friendship between their two warring countries. No expense was spared in crafting opulent events where each country eager to out-do the other, from wrestling, to feasts, and to the music.

Two of the period’s most exception composers, France’s Jean Mouton and England’s William Cornysh, led their respective monarch’s Chapels Royal, the carefully selected group of singers tasked with performing sacred music for the royal families. Each would have crafted special musical presentations showcasing the best their country had to offer. While the exact music performed has not been passed on to history, Peter Phillips has taken the splendor of this unique occasion as inspiration for selecting some of the greatest masterpieces from this period to honor this regal cultural exchange.

The Tallis Scholars were founded in 1973 by their director, Peter Phillips. Through their recordings and concert performances, they have established themselves as the leading exponents of Renaissance sacred music throughout the world. Peter Phillips has worked with the ensemble to create, through excellent tuning and blend, the purity and clarity of sound which he feels best serve the Renaissance repertoire, allowing every detail of the musical lines to be heard. It is the resulting beauty of sound for which The Tallis Scholars have become so widely renowned. The Tallis Scholars perform in both sacred and secular venues, giving around 70 concerts each year across the globe. Recordings by The Tallis Scholars have attracted many awards throughout the world including a Gramophone award, the Diapason d'Or de l'Année, and a Grammy nomination.

Peter Phillips has made an impressive if unusual reputation for himself in dedicating his life’s work to the research and performance of Renaissance polyphony. He founded The Tallis Scholars in 1973, with whom he has now appeared in over 1600 concerts and made over 50 discs, encouraging interest in polyphony all over the world. Apart from The Tallis Scholars, Peter Phillips continues to work with other specialist ensembles including Collegium Vocale of Ghent, the VoxVocal Ensemble of New York, and Musix of Budapest. He has made numerous television and radio appearances, on BBC Radio 4 and the World Service as well as on German, French, Canadian and North American radio. Peter also works extensively with the BBC Singers with whom he gave a Promenade concert, in collaboration with The Tallis Scholars, from the Royal Albert Hall in July 2007, which was broadcast live and attended by over five thousand people.

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Recognized as the preeminent early music presenter and Baroque opera producer in North America, the Boston Early Music Festival has been credited with securing Boston’s reputation as “America’s early music capital” (The Boston Globe). Founded in 1981, the Boston Early Music Festival offers diverse programs and activities, including three Grammy-nominated opera recordings, an annual concert series that brings early music’s brightest stars to the Boston and New York concert stages, and a biennial week-long Festival and Exhibition recognized as the “world’s leading festival of early music” (The Times, London). The 17th Boston Early Music Festival is planned for June 9–16, 2013.

The 2011–2012 Boston Early Music Festival Concert Series is presented with support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, National Endowment for the Arts, ConstellationCenter, 99.5 All Classical, Harpsichord Clearing House, Zuckermann Harpsichords International, The Gregory E. Bulger Foundation, U. S. Trust/Bank of America Private Wealth Management, and GTC Law Group.

For more information, images, press tickets, or to schedule an interview, please contact Kathleen Fay at 617-661-1812 or email