The Galway Early Music Festival, May 27-29, is live and hybrid in 2022 with a dazzling programme featuring music and the stars, the harmony of the planets in their orbits, the music of mathematics and geometry, music in art, and the music at the heart of the Universe! As Pythagoras said, “There is geometry in the humming of the strings, there is music in the spacing of the spheres.”
“We’re going full STEAM ahead this year and placing music and art at the centre of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), as it was from the time of Pythagoras right up to the Baroque era”, says Maura Ó Cróinín, Festival director. “The idea that the universe is based on harmony and proportion, and that this is expressed not only in the sciences of mathematics, geometry and astronomy, but also in music opens a new way of experiencing the wonderful music of the medieval, renaissance and baroque eras.”
The festival starts with The Astrolabe, a concert following the movement of scientific and musical ideas from the middle east to Europe in the medieval period with the Vlad Smishkewych Ensemble, and moves on to a celebration of the celestial sky with Teddie Hwang, baroque flutist and astral photographer, and Yonit Kosovske, harpsichord. In Listening to Art, the world renowned Orlando Consort, presents a visual and aural feast featuring some of the greatest painters and composers of the Renaissance. California based Alphabet Baroque Club with guest Ruth Cunningham, soprano (of Anonymous 4 fame), give us From Chaos to Lawes, highlighting science in all its aspects in a programme that reaches from Hildegard von Bingen’s heavenly chant to Marin Marais’s delightfully macabre musical picture of a bladder stone surgery, L’Operation de la Taille. In a rousing finale to the festival, Resurgam Chamber Choir (director Mark Duley) and the English Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble, with continuo Siobhán Armstrong (arpa doppia) and Malcolm Proud (harpsichord), brings the colourful and virtuosic beauty of Rosenmuller’s vocal music to Ireland for the first time in Abendmusik 3:Over the Alps (in partnership with Music for Galway and Galway 2020). GEM also welcomes the Early Music Group of Kiili, Estonia, to Galway for a musical coffee morning in St Nicholas Collegiate Church.
In addition to this full concert programme, the festival also includes talks, demonstrations, exhibitions, adult instrumental and dance workshops, music in the Red Earl’s Hall, and GEM’s Early Music for Young Musicians workshops and concert.
Full programme listings and ticket sales at www.galwayearlymusic.com.