The Club was delighted to welcome back Hexachordia, the Early Music Group who visited us last in March 2018. A concert is a giving and a receiving of pleasure arising from the music played and December’s concert was a good example of this. There was quite a good turnout considering the present climate with Covid still rife, but we were all socially distanced and wearing our face masks.
The concert began with Sarah Doig and Jane Scheuregger singing, in Latin, Veni Veni Emmanuel, a capella as they processed down the hall at the Grammar School. Diction was clear and the singing tuneful, giving a sense of anticipation of what was to come. The music was interspersed with readings of poetry and prose. I particularly liked the reading of ‘Blow, blow thou winter winds’ from As You Like It which followed ‘On the Cold Ground’ by John Playford, ‘Jolly Shepherd’ by Thomas Ravenscroft and ‘In the Fields in Frost and Snow’ by John Playford.
I very much liked the bagpipes played by Jane; they were very festive being festooned with fairy lights. Mention must also be made of Tony Scheuregger who played the lute, renaissance guitar, gittern, recorders, tabor and pellet bells. He also sang, and very well too. The English traditional song “King Herod and the Cock” was great fun.
What a multi-talented ensemble this is. I have mentioned the instruments that Tony plays, but Jane and Sarah are equally talented, Jane playing recorders, crumhorn (what a lovely sound that makes) bagpipes, shaker, gittern and shawm, and Sarah playing viols, vielle and recorder.
The musicians did praise the acoustic of the hall and certainly their voices rang out and filled the space. Sarah had a minor problem in the second to last music of the first half when one of her viol strings broke, but that was taken care of during the interval.
Mince pies and wine were enjoyed during the interval and the audience was ready to enjoy the second half of a wonderful evening’s entertainment.