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World famous conductor, Paul McCreesh, helps launch Sestina’s Master and Pupil programme

Wednesday 25th September 2019 at 2pm 0 Comments Northern Ireland Music

Sestina Singers Image: Sestina Singers

Sestina, the Belfast based early music ensemble, will be joined by their patron and world renowned conductor, Paul McCreesh, later this month for a special performance launching the Master and Pupil Programme for 2020.

Next year Sestina's Easter Mentoring Course in 2020 will feature a programme tracing the artistic influence and legacy of the roles of Master and Pupil following a thread of learning from Jean Mouton (c.1459-1522) to Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643) and his own assistants. The rehearsal week and concert tour will take place from 13-18th April 2020 across Belfast, Cork and Dublin, funded by Exitex, Arts Council of Ireland, Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Foyle Foundation.

During the Easter tour, Sestina will record the programme, in an exciting new collaboration with the Resonus Classics label. This will be Sestina's first ever recording, and the first of a planned three discs with Resonus on the "Master and Pupil" theme.

On 26th September, Sestina will launch this new programme with a performance featuring Sestina singers, musicians and Musical Director Mark Chambers. Sestina patron Paul McCreesh, who is founder and Artistic Director of the renowned Gabrieli Consort, will join the evening.

Commenting on the launch, Mark Chambers, Sestina’s Musical Director, said; “

The Master and Pupil idea was born out of the ethos at the centre of Sestina's work, which is learning by collaboration and being exposed to excellence-whether that be players or guest professional singers.  Having taught singing in Ireland for many years, I have always been struck by the natural ear of the singers and musicians here and their ability to pick up subtle details of style and inflection very quickly.”

Master and Pupil follows a trail of composers and their pupils across a time span of 1400-1650 in Italy and Europe, proposing that each "great" composer had to learn from someone above them.  This is exactly how we learn with Sestina and this is now borne out by many of our singers singing as full time professionals, and now, they are set to become the "Masters" for a new generation of Irish singers.

The evening later this month is a perfect way to celebrate our Masters and Pupils and to have Paul McCreesh join us will make for a very special evening indeed,” Mark added.

On 27 September at the Ulster Museum, Sestina will play its autumn concert series Beyond the Veil: Revealing the secret music of Italy and the Concerto delle donne, funded by Exitex and the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Sestina sopranos Fiona Flynn, Aisling Kenny and Charlotte Trepess, along with some of Europe’s finest early music instrumental specialists, including Steven Devine on keyboards, Paula Chateauneuf on theorbo/lute and Aileen Henry on harp, will bring rarely heard music of late Renaissance Ferrara to audiences.  The following evening, Sestina will play to audiences in St. Ann's Church, Dawson St., Dublin (28 September). For details of all concerts or how to get involved visit


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