Press Release


Boston Early Music Festival presents The Tallis Scholars in a program of works by Byrd, Victoria, Tallis, Allegri, and others – Friday, December 6, in Harvard Square

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ARTISTS:The Tallis Scholars (UK)
Peter Phillips, director
WHEN:Friday, December 6, 2019 at 8pm
St. Paul Church, Bow & Arrow Streets, Cambridge, MA

Reflections: Music of Byrd, Victoria, Tallis, Allegri, and others

Chant: Salve Regina
Juan Gutierrez de Padilla: Salve Regina
Francis Poulenc: Salve Regina
William Cornysh: Salve Regina
Chant: Ave Maria
Cornysh: Ave Maria
Jean Mouton: Ave Maria, gratia plena
Gregorio Allegri: Miserere
Giovanni Croce: Miserere
Thomas Tallis: O sacrum convivium
Olivier Messiaen: O sacrum convivium
William Byrd: Short Magnificat
Tomás Luis de Victoria: Magnificat for double choir

TICKETS:Tickets are priced at $25, $45, $55, and $75 each, and can be purchased at and 617-661-1812; a $5 discount for students, seniors, and groups is available by calling 617-661-1812. Subscription discounts are available with the purchase of three or more programs on the 2019-2020 Season.

Throughout the Renaissance, composers would bring their own unique perspectives and backgrounds to bear when they set sacred music based on familiar, centuries-old chants. This holiday season, the legendary voices of The Tallis Scholars and director Peter Phillips will explore a handful of these seminal texts from the Salve Regina and Ave Maria to the Miserere and Magnificat in a fascinating program showcasing brilliantly contrasting settings from Spain, England, Italy, Mexico, and France. Two or more composers are featured for each set of sacred words, including Allegri and his famous Miserere, with music from such masters as Byrd, Victoria, Padilla, and the ensemble’s namesake, Thomas Tallis.

“I’ve long been fascinated by how composers from different backgrounds set the same, seminal texts. This program goes some way towards showing how important and durable plainchant was, from the Renaissance period to 20th century Paris; and from territories as far apart as England and Mexico.” – Peter Phillips

There will be a pre-concert talk by Tallis Scholars director Peter Phillips at 7pm.

The Tallis Scholars were founded in 1973 by 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 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, usually giving around 70 concerts each year across the globe. On 21st September 2015 the group gave their 2000th concert at St John’s Smith Square in London. Recordings by The Tallis Scholars have attracted many awards, and were nominated for a Grammy Award in 2001, 2009, and 2010. The latest recording of Josquin masses, Missa Gaudeamus and Missa L’ami Baudichon, was released in November 2018.

Peter Phillips has dedicated his career to the research and performance of Renaissance polyphony, and to the perfecting of choral sound. He founded The Tallis Scholars in 1973, with whom he has now appeared in over 2,200 concerts and made over 60 discs, encouraging interest in polyphony all over the world. Peter Phillips also conducts other specialist ensembles, including the BBC Singers, the Netherlands Chamber Choir, the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and the Choeur de Chambre de Namur. In 2014 he launched the London International A Cappella Choir Competition in St John’s Smith Square, attracting choirs from all over the world. His first book, English Sacred Music 1549-1649, was published by Gimell in 1991, while his second, What We Really Do, appeared in 2013. During 2018, BBC Radio 3 will broadcast his view of Renaissance polyphony in a series of six hour-long programs.

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BEMF’s 2019–2020 Season Press Release:

Recognized as the preeminent early music presenter and Baroque opera producer in North America, the Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF) has been credited with securing Boston’s reputation as “America’s early music capital” (The Boston Globe). Founded in 1981, BEMF offers diverse programs and activities, including one GRAMMY Award-winning and four GRAMMY Award-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 21st Boston Early Music Festival – themed A Celebration of Women in the Arts – will take place from June 6–13, 2021, and feature the fully staged North American premiere of Henry Desmarest’s Circé. BEMF’s Artistic Leadership includes Artistic Directors Paul O’Dette and Stephen Stubbs, Opera Director Gilbert Blin, Orchestra Director Robert Mealy, and Dance Director Melinda Sullivan.

The 2019-2020 Boston Early Music Festival Concert Series is presented with support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, National Endowment for the Arts, Constellation Charitable Foundation, and WGBH Radio Boston, as well as a number of generous foundations and individuals from around the world.

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