Thu 23rd May 2019
Bev Early Music Fest Logo

Friday 24th - Sunday 26th May, various venues in Beverley and beyond!

Beverley & East Riding Early Music Festival 2019, takes place against the backdrop of one of the most beautiful towns in the UK. 
This year’s theme is passion - for life, for the countryside, for religion, for lovers and for music – a joyous celebration, bringing together old friends and new in this picturesque county town. Once again, we are pleased to welcome artists and performers from the UK and beyond for an exciting line-up of concerts, workshops, walks and talks, all taking place in Beverley’s stunning churches and on its historic streets.

This year’s highlights include:

Joglaresa, The Virgin Queen

A passionate and curious tale of wild romance intertwined with melody and song drawn from the shadows of the Byzantine Empire through to Medieval Europe. This exuberant medieval/folk music ensemble’s line up is: Belinda Sykes, voice and bagpipes; Angela Hicks, voice and harp; Elisabeth Flett, fidel, recorder, voice; Louise Anna Duggan, dulcimer, percussion, voice; and Sally Pomme Clayton, storyteller.


“magic and menace … thrilling and haunting” The Times


24 May, 7.30pm, St Mary’s Church, North Bar Within, Beverley



Block4, Stargazing 

A celebration of artists who have looked to the skies for inspiration, Block4 trace musical lines through the stars with instrumental and vocal work spanning seven centuries. This quartet of recorder musicians offer a captivating interpretation of music from the Renaissance and Baroque period.


“astonishing vitality” Seen-and-heard International


25 May,12.30pm, St Mary’s Church, North Bar Within, Beverley




The Tallis Scholars, directed by Peter Phillips, A Very English Passion

Featuring some of the most heartfelt music to come from the English Renaissance, the programme draws together two very English styles separated by a hundred years.  The Mass for Five Voices by William Byrd, renowned Catholic composer from the Elizabethan era, will be performed alongside Fawkyner’s rarely performed Gaude rosa and Fayrfax’s Maria plena virtute, from the Eton Choirbook – a volume of religious music created between 1500 and 1504.


 “The rock stars of Renaissance vocal music”, New York Times


25 May, 7.30pm, Beverley Minster



Fitzwilliam String Quartet, Haydn String Quartet Op 51 “Seven Last Words” 

Celebrating their 50th anniversary year, the quartet makes a welcome return to Beverley for a very special performance mixing the musical genius of Haydn with a series of short reflections written by Canon Peter Moger, Acting Dean of York Minster. The quartet have performed the piece in Cadiz, where the work was commissioned, and all over the world, in venues ranging from tiny churches to concert halls and cathedrals.


‘Britain’s premier string quartet ensemble … the pride of the nation.’ Fanfare


26 May, 3.00pm, St John’s RC Church, North Bar Without, Beverley



Cantoria,  El Fuego

A flourish of fiery Iberian drama, drawing on music from the Renaissance and telling stories of desire and passion, taken from Spanish songbooks which reveal a colourful world of demons, saints and sinners. Performers are: Ines Alonso, soprano; Samuel Tapia, countertenor; Jorge Losana, tenor and Valentin Miralles, bass.


NCEM Platform Artists, Cantoria were selected as one of the EEEmerging ensembles supported by the NCEM and colleagues across the European Union funded by creative Europe.


"When these guys opened their mouths the room was filled with light"



26 May, 7.00pm, St James’s Church, Warter, East Riding of Yorkshire



The 2019 festival also features an exciting programme of workshops, walks and talks including:


The Ballad Walks, two different walks led by singer Vivien Ellis and a local guide, which take us through the last 800 years of Beverley’s sometimes murky history and turbulent past, telling the stories of fascinating local characters.


It All Happened in Beverley, 25 May, 4.00 pm, meet outside the Beverley Arms Hotel


To Beverley We Must Go, 26 May, 10.30am, meet outside the Beverley Arms Hotel


Revising Pevsner, Dr Jane Grenville gives an illustrated talk about her journey across the North Riding of Yorkshire as she revises Pevsner’s series. As well as discussing his passion for architecture she will be sharing some of the musical highlights she discovered along the way.


25 May, 4.00pm, St John of Beverley RC Church, 5 North Bar Without



Festival Director Dr Delma Tomlin MBE said, “It’s always a joy to return to the beautiful town of Beverley for this annual celebration of early music. This year’s festival is all about passion – and we’re sure that these concerts will inspire and thrill you. As well as an array of world class concerts, we’ll be offering musical workshops and talks, plus the fascinating Ballad Walks bringing the streets of Beverley to life and revealing its history through music and song.”


Just Beverley