Canti B recording

We’ve started rehearsing again. Hurrah! And it’s so good to have some news to share.

Asako, Ali and David at Sophie’s Barn, Oxfordshire

We have been given the opportunity of recording a second disc. In November we will be travelling to Alpheton in Suffolk, to a new recording venue (opened just before lockdown), Alpheton New Maltings, with experienced engineer/producer David Hinitt.

The material to be recorded will be pieces from a manuscript published in Venice in 1501 by the music publisher, Ottaviano Petrucci, entitled Canti B. This is the second in a series of three which were the first music prints to be produced using movable type. They were hugely successful and widely disseminated on the Italian peninsular, and yet today are relatively little known. The repertoire is a perfect fit for the Linarol Consort, playing on our set of viols copied from the oldest surviving viol, from Venice of about 1540.

This manuscript has been the subject of a lock-down project that David has been leading with students from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. He had been teaching an early music notation class with these young musicians, so when, in March, it became impossible to attend the conservatoire in person, he decided that they would continue their work by producing a new, complete edition of the manuscript, using the skills learnt in the class. Each student has “adopted” a number of pieces from the manuscript and produced high quality, cleanly type-set editions. David is collating these and the whole collection will be published through the conservatoire this year. This will not only develop the students’ understanding of how to edit early manuscripts, but it will give them the satisfaction of having a published edition that will be extremely useful to players in the field of early music. The CD and the edition together will form an important resource to students of consort music of the early 16th century.

Recording and producing a CD is an expensive undertaking, so we are absolutely delighted and extremely grateful to be awarded generous grants from Angel Early Music, Derek Hill Foundation, BMEMF and MEMF who are making the recording possible.

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