Review: Quire Cleveland sing Davy’s St. Matthew Passion (April 9)

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This past weekend, as the culmination of a three-decade labor of love, Cleveland scholar, professor, and conductor Ross Duffin conducted his reconstruction of 15th-century English composer Richard Davy’s St. Matthew Passion. Performances were given in Akron and Cleveland by Duffin’s own Quire Cleveland with Jeffrey Strauss and Owen McIntosh as the soloists. I heard the Sunday afternoon performance on April 9 at Historic St. Peter’s Church in downtown Cleveland.

Richard Davy was master of the choristers at Oxford’s Magdalen College in the 1490s. His, the first polyphonic Passion setting by a known composer, appeared in the Eton Choirbook, a physically large collection of motets with Davy’s Passion at the end. About a third of the contents have gone missing over the past five centuries, including portions of Davy’s work. Read more »

Review: Quire Cleveland: “Carols for Quire VIII” at Trinity Cathedral (December 2)

QuireTrinityMost choirs do well to take on one or two non-English languages in their programs. Quire Cleveland handily dispatched Christmas music from five centuries in Latin, Finnish, Latvian, Spanish (in several of its dialects), Wendat, Abenaki, Mohawk, and Afro-Portuguese in the eighth edition of “Carols for Quire” at Trinity Cathedral on Friday evening, December 2. Whatever the language, they sounded terrific. Read more »

Review: Quire Cleveland:
William Byrd at Historic St. Peter Church (May 22)

Review: Quire Cleveland: Carols for Quire 7 at St. Peter’s Church (December 6)

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When you’ve presented a Christmas program every December for seven years, it could become a routine event — your institutional Nutcracker. Happily, Quire Cleveland has taken its “Carols for Quire” program in new directions and infused it with new twists every year. The 21-voice professional ensemble’s concert on Sunday afternoon in the chaste, Gothic space of St. Peter’s Church in downtown Cleveland just might have been its best edition yet. Read more »

Review: Quire Cleveland: Wondrous Rounds and Canons in Painesville

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Expanding its reach around the region, Ross W. Duffin and Quire Cleveland took their survey of rounds and canons to Painesville United Methodist Church on Sunday afternoon, November 8. “Sing You After Me: Wondrous Rounds & Canons” showed the variety of ways that melodies combined with themselves can produce larger pieces of music. The cleverly-devised program featured two dozen works ranging from the 13th to the 19th centuries in expert performances by Quire’s 19 professional singers. Read more »

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