The Sixteen Celebrates 40th Birthday!

The Sixteen marks its 40th anniversary with the return of its annual and much-loved Choral Pilgrimage.  Under the baton of Harry Christophers, this year’s programme, entitled ‘An Enduring Voice’, spans choral works over six centuries.  It captures music past and present, highlighting the choir’s choral journey over the last four decades.

Harry Christophers (third left) with the current line up of The Sixteen

The Sixteen has long been celebrated for its championing of Tudor music, particularly that of the Eton Choirbook, as well as choral treasures of the 20th century and its work with 21st-century composers. This year’s programme revisits The Sixteen’s grassroots with performances of English polyphony juxtaposed with works by Tavener and Eric Whitacre. The Sixteen’s close relationship with award-winning composer, Sir James MacMillan continues with a new commission, O virgo prudentissma based on a fragment from the Eton Choirbook. The programme also features music by Sheppard and Fayrfax’s Eternae laudis lilium which was performed on The Sixteen’s very first recording on Hyperion as well as Gabriel Jackson’s Ave Maria and Wylkynson’s monumental Salve Regina, also from the Eton Choirbook.

Choral Workshops 2019

The Sixteen continues to invest in a number of dynamic education and outreach projects with the aim of engaging further with its current audience and developing a new one. The ethos of access and support runs throughout their thriving education programme. During the tour, The Sixteen invite those who enjoy choral music, of all ages and backgrounds, to join in through the Choral Workshop Series. This year, the choir undertakes eight workshops to give keen amateur singers an opportunity to explore a selection of music inspired by its 19th Choral Pilgrimage programme.

Throughout the tour the education team, spend a 5-day residency in Carlisle, Manchester and Truro with animateur Sam Glazer and singers from Genesis Sixteen, its free choral training programme for singers aged 18-23. The education team also deliver its annual schools matinee project with Key Stage 2 pupils, as well as working with the wider community with relaxed performances in care-homes, further developing its work with the homeless and for the first time working with refugee groups.

Pilgrimage Dates 2019

3 April 2019, 7.30pm, Kings Place, London

5 April 2019, 7.30pm, St John’s College Chapel, Cambridge

5 June 2019, 8pm, Old Royal Navel College Chapel, Greenwich

21 June 2019, 7.30pm, Boughton Aluph Church, Boughton Aluph

8 July 2019, 7.30pm, The Bridgewater Hall, Manchester

9 July 2019, 7.30pm, York Minster

10 July 2019, 7.30pm, Lancaster Priory

11 July 2019, 7.30pm, Carlisle Cathedral

12 July 2019, 7.30pm, Hull Minster

6 September 2019, 7.30pm, Wells Cathedral

7 September 2019, 7.30pm, Tewkesbury Abbey

10 September 2019, 7.30pm, St James’s Church, Spanish Place, London

11 September 2019, 7.30pm, All Saints’ Church Northampton*

13 September 2019, 7.30pm, Winchester Cathedral*

19 September 2019, 7.30pm, Birmingham Cathedral

20 September 2019, 7.30pm, Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral

21 September 2019, 7.30pm, Blackburn Cathedral

2 October 2019, 7.30pm, Croydon Minster*

9 October 2019, 7.30pm, Hereford Cathedral

10 October 2019, 7.30pm, Llandaff Cathedral

11 October 2019, 7.30pm, Truro Cathedral

12 October 2019, 7.30pm, Exeter Cathedral

18 October 2019, 8pm, Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford

23 October 2019, 7.30pm, Southwell Minster

24 October 2019,7.30pm, Sheffield Cathedral

25 October 2019, 7.30pm, Durham Cathedral

26 October 2019, 7.30pm, Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh

… and the Programme

Plainsong Salve Regina

Tavener Hymn to the Mother of God

Sheppard ‘Gloria’ from the Cantate Mass

Eric Whitacre Sainte-Chapelle

Wylkynson Salve Regina a9

Fayrfax Eternae laudis lilium

Gabriel Jackson Ave Maria

Tavener Hymn for the Dormition of the Mother of God

James MacMillan O virgo prudentissima (new commission)

Sheppard ‘Agnus Dei’ from Cantate Mass


*conducted by Eamonn Dougan, Associate Conductor