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Bristol Early Music Festival

Starts: 1st May 2020

A feast of medieval and renaissance music, with concerts, workshops for singers and players, instrument-makers' talks/demos, and other events.


Start Date

1st May 2020

End Date

3rd May 2020


All Saints Church, Pembroke Road, Bristol


The Basilisk, His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts, Nova, the Schola Cantorum of Bristol University Music Dept, and expert workshop leaders


Following the great success of our inaugural festival in 2019, we are back in May 2020, the same venue, a similar mix of concerts, workshops, and other events - but more emphasis on medieval and early renaissance music, and one or two other innovations.

The opening concert celebrates the four medieval gates of Bristol, and evokes the lively street scene and street music of the 15th century. The Saturday evening concert brings to life the famous meeting of Henry VIII with Francois II of France, lavishly staged in 1520 at the "Field of the Cloth of Gold", with music from the greatest English and French musicians of the period. And on Sunday we have a short concert of medieval plainchant and polyphony.

There will be two recorder workshops, for players at different levels; an instrumental workshop led by members of His Majestys Sagbutts & Cornetts; and a workshop for singers focused on rounds and catches - which have been part of popular English music from the middle ages onwards.

The instrument exhibition this year will feature informal talks and demonstrations by four instrument makers. And to round off the festival, there will be a cabaret-style musical entertainment, with licensed bar.

Disabled Facilities

Wheelchair access to all concerts, the exhibition, and some other events.


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