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The vocal ensemble Blue Heron, directed by Scott Metcalfe, has been acclaimed by The Boston Globe as “one of the Boston music community’s indispensables” and hailed by Alex Ross in The New Yorker for the “expressive intensity” of its interpretations. Combining a commitment to vivid live performance with the study of original source materials and historical performance practices, Blue Heron ranges over a wide and fascinating repertoire, including 15th-century English and Franco-Flemish polyphony, Spanish music between 1500 and 1600, and neglected early 16th-century English music, especially the rich and unique repertory of the Peterhouse partbooks, copied c. 1540 for Canterbury Cathedral. Blue Heron’s first CD, featuring music by Guillaume Du Fay, was released in 2007. In 2010 the ensemble inaugurated a 5-CD series of Music from the Peterhouse Partbooks. It was completed with the released of Volume 5 in March 2017, which has been shortlisted for a 2018 Gramophone Award for Early Music. The set includes many world premiere recordings.
Blue Heron presents a concert series in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The ensemble has appeared at the Boston Early Music Festival; in New York City at The Cloisters (Metropolitan Museum of Art), the 92nd Street Y, and Music Before 1800; at the National Gallery of Art and Dumbarton Oaks in Washington, D.C., at Festival Mozaic in San Luis Obispo, California, and at the Berkeley Early Music Festival. It has also performed in Seattle, St. Louis,
Boston-based professional ensemble Blue Heron performs "Ave Maria dive matris Anne" live in concert at First Church in Cambridge, Congregational, on April 28, 2017. A recording of this work also appears on BHCD1002, "Three Marian Antiphons", which was the first volume of Blue Heron's 5-CD set of recordings of music from the Peterhouse Partbooks. copied c.1540 for Canterbury Cathedral. The recording project,. called "one of the most important early choral projects of our time", was completed in March 2017. Nearly every track on these historic discs is a world premiere recording. Blue Heron (L to R) Owen McIntosh, Mark Sprinkle, Teresa Wakim, Shari Alise Wilson, Margot Rood, David McFerrin, Paul Guttry, Steven Hrycelak, Michael Barrett, Jason McStoots. Pamela Dellal, Martin Near, Jennifer Ashe Music Director: Scott Metcalfe Video by Kathy Wittman | Ball Square Films Audio by Philip H. Davis www.blueheron.org
Exultet in hac die (Rejoicing this day), is the opening track from Anonymous: Missa sine nomine (Music from the Peterhouse Partbooks, vol. 5), released March 17, 2017 Composed by Hugh Sturmy (fl. c. 1540), completed by Nick Sandon (Antico Edition RCM117).