Concert archive

7th Sept. 2013- Dame Emma Kirkby and Michael Chance CBE

What a privilege it was to welcome two such highly respected performers to join us in Norwich Cathedral...a concert to be remembered for us all.

Dame Emma Kirkby
Michael Chance CBE

Director-Jim O'Toole

Stabat Mater - Vivaldi
Salve Regina - Leonardo Leo
Stabat Mater - Pergolesi
Concerto Grosso Op.6 no 4 Corelli
Concerto for Strings in C major - Vivaldi


Dame Emma Kirkby and Michael Chance, two of the stars of the early music movement , revealed their gifts and skills in a concert that delighted a large audience.

In Vivaldi’s Stabat Mater the countertenor conveyed the emotions of the medieval Latin text on the sorrows of Mary watching her son die on the cross. His interpretation was meticulously nuanced yet without exaggeration.

The soprano’s first contribution was a Salve Regina by Leonardo Leo, an 18th century composer from Naples whose works, it appears, we ought to have more opportunity to hear. Then Dame Emma joined Michael Chance in another Stabat mater, this time the well known setting by Pergolesi.

The two voices combined well, blending in some of the brief sections and contrasting in others. The work calls for quick changes of mood and style. The singers responded with the flexibility that comes from confidence.

They attacked the fugal passages with fearless vigour. Not even that, though, was enough to prevent the final Amens from sounding disappointingly perfunctory.

Providing attentive, if just once or twice rather heavy accompaniment, Norwich Baroque opened with Vivaldi. A concerto grosso by Corelli started the 2nd half, with Jim O’Toole picking just the right pace for the last movement.

Christopher Smith.