St. Edmund's Church, Crickhowell
Saturday 2nd May at 7.30pm
Elin Manahan Thomas (soprano), Stephen Power (countertenor), Nicholas Mulroy (tenor), Robert Davies (bass) with Festival Baroque Orchestra
- PURCELL: Come ye Sons of Art (Birthday Ode for Queen Mary)
- BACH: Magnificat in D
- HANDEL: Eternal Source of Light Divine
- STROZZI: O Maria
Tonight we delve into a baroque treasure-trove by courtesy of composers Purcell, Bach, Handel and Barbara Strozzi. Yes, Strozzi, now widely acknowledged as a master-musician from Monteverdi's Venice, whose sensuous aria O Maria as sung by Elin Manahan Thomas will prove to be a revelation. Elin's performance of Handel's Eternal Source of Light Divine, featuring David Blackadder's distinguished trumpet playing, will surely provide another highlight. Joint forces are, however, demanded to celebrate with Purcell's ebullient birthday ode written for his favourite Queen, complete with such show-stopping numbers as Sound the Trumpet, a flamboyant duet for countertenors. Bach's Magnificat setting, considered one of the composer's crowning achievements, clinches the programme with an extra flourish.
Elin Manahan Thomas
Elin Manahan Thomas is one of the most exceptional sopranos of her generation. Since releasing her début album 'Eternal Light' in 2007, with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, she has performed at many of the world's most prestigious venues and festivals, and with leading orchestras and conductors. Perhaps most famously known for her performances of baroque masterpieces - such as Handel's Eternal Source of Light Divine at the London 2012 Paralympics Opening Ceremony - Elin is equally at home performing classical and contemporary works.
Elin has performed across Europe at major venues and festivals, including: the Edinburgh, Canterbury, Three Choirs, Llangollen, Mostly Mozart and Lufthansa festivals, St John's Smith Square, Wigmore Hall, Royal Albert Hall, Birmingham Town Hall, Bridgewater Hall, Casa de Musica in Porto, Zurich Tonhalle, and the Concertgebouw Amsterdam. In 2008 Elin gave the World Première of Sir John Tavener's Requiem in Liverpool Cathedral (also recorded for EMI), and later premiered his Love Duet at the Manchester International Festival in 2013. Elin sang in the premiere of Karl Jenkin's 'Cantata Memoria' in October 2016, written to commemorate the Aberfan disaster 50 years earlier; the piece was also released on Deutsche Gramophon records. In May 2018 she was honoured to perform at the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
Stephen Power is the Director of Music at Brecon Cathedral. Before coming to Brecon in 2014, Stephen was Organ Scholar at Gloucester Cathedral where his musical education began in 1988 as a chorister. He studied music at the University of Huddersfield and won a performance prize upon graduation. He then moved the short distance to Wakefield Cathedral where he was Organ Scholar, latterly Second Assistant Organist, followed by nine months working at Ripon Cathedral as acting Assistant Director of Music.
Stephen has also held singing posts in several cathedral choirs, most notably a three and a half year spell at Southwell Minster, and most recently, at Gloucester. He has given numerous organ recitals at Town and City Halls and at many larger churches and Cathedrals.
Born in Liverpool, Nicholas was a chorister at the city's Metropolitan Cathedral before studying Modern Languages at Cambridge and voice at the RAM. He has since been in constant demand both in the UK and further afield in a wide range of concert, recital and opera engagements.
Widely known for his performances of Baroque repertoire, he has sung with some of its most noted exponents: Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Paul McCreesh and the Gabrieli Consort, John Butt and the Dunedin Consort. He has also sung to great acclaim with I Fagiolini, the King's Consort, Les Musiciens du Louvre, and other famous groups and opera houses worldwide.
Nicholas is also a committed recitalist appearing at the Wigmore Hall and other major festivals. His recording achievements are equally impressive and extensive with many Gramophone Awards to his name.
Born in Colchester, Robert studied at the University of Sheffield and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama before embarking on a solo career, both on the opera stage and concert platform.
Awarded the Erich Vietheer Memorial Award at Glyndebourne, he went on to appear as Mr Gedge Albert Herring, Marcello La Bohème, Count Almaviva Le Nozze di Figaro and Doctor Falke Die Fledermaus on the Festival Tour
Robert has sung under the baton of such distinguished conductors as Sir Simon Rattle, Vladimir Jurowski, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Emanuelle Haim, Sir Mark Elder, Richard Hickox, Edward Gardner and Robin Ticciati.
As well as his opera and concert work, Robert is in demand as a consort singer. He regularly performs with the Dunedin Consort and has been featured as consort soloist with the Gabrieli Consort (Elijah, BBC Proms 2011).
Tickets: £16 - students and under 18s free
Buy online from the 22nd of February.
A booking fee of 50p per ticket is applied to online purchases.
Tickets can also be purchased from the 22nd of February from:
- Webbs of Crickhowell
- Choir Members
- Genet Bevan (01873) 810935