Announcing the world's largest Early Music event

The Royal Greenwich International Early Music Festival & Exhibition 2012

Thursday 8 - Saturday 10 November

Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich, London SE10 9NN

Featuring The Sixteen, the debut UK performance of the European Union Baroque Orchestra, the Trinity Laban Classical Orchestra and His Majestys Sackbutts and Cornetts.

2012 has been a momentous year for the Royal Borough of Greenwich - royal status, the Queen opening the Cutty Sark, the Diamond Jubilee celebrations, the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and now the Royal Greenwich International Early Music Festival and Exhibition,Thursday 8 - Saturday 10 November.

Hosted by The Early Music Shop, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance and the Greenwich Foundation. the Festival and Exhibition returns for the eleventh year to the Old Royal Naval College with a truly impressive concert programme.

This year's highlights -

The Sixteen, conducted by Harry Christophers, performing 'A Golden Age'. This glorious concert programme presents composers whose origins are either in Portugal or Italy and whose music is at times reflective, uplifting and always inspired. (Friday 9 November, 7.30 pm, The Chapel, Old Royal Naval College).

EUBO2012, the European Union Baroque Orchestra; a group of super-talented baroque instrumentalists from all over Europe, which will make its debut UK appearance on Saturday 10 November at the Old Royal Naval College Chapel. 'All Roads Lead To Rome' is directed by Danish harpsichordist Lars Ulrik Mortensen with Croatian concertmaster Bojan Čičić and will showcase music by some of our greatest European composers: Handel, Muffat and Corelli.

Significant anniversaries this year include His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts celebrating its 30th birthday in 2012 with a programme marking the 400th anniversary of the death of Giovanni Gabrieli, whose name has become synonymous with opulent, ecclesiastical music and playful instrumental canzonas with choirs positioned in lofty galleries around grand churches, creating a wondrous 16th -century surround sound. (Thursday 8 November, 5.30 pm, St Alfege Church).

Other events include masterclasses with Alison Crum, 'the doyenne of British viol teachers' and Adrian Chandler, Baroque violinist (open to conservatoire and university students); and a masterclass with Dan Laurin especially for young musicians from conservatoire junior departments and specialist music schools.

The exhibition, recognised as the world's largest early music fair, takes place in the magnificent Christopher Wren designed Painted Hall, the Queen Mary Undercroft and King William Undercroft. Many Early Music enthusiasts make this annual pilgrimage to test finely crafted Medieval, Baroque and Renaissance instruments and meet makers from around the world who offer advice on all aspects of their instruments, from basic servicing and string replacement to decoration and troubleshooting. Instruments on display and for sale include: recorders, flutes, crumhorns, shawms, racketts, lutes, viols, fiddles, sackbutts, trumpets, rebecs, harps, hurdy-gurdies, drums, harpsichords, plus a superb collection of sheet music, CDs and books.

New for 2012 will be the Early Music Shop's kit instrument demonstrations! Advice and demonstrations on building EMS kit instruments - including lutes and crumhorns from scratch. 

Visitors to the exhibition can also attend a variety of Makers Demonstration Recitals held throughout the three day event, at Admirals House. Admission is free to exhibition ticket holders.

BBC Radio 3 will again present a live edition of its flagship early music programme featuring music, new and views from this year's event.

Picture - The Sixteen - credit Molina Visuals

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