War and conflict from the Renaissance to the present day are the compelling subjects of vocal ensemble The Sixteen's boldly eclectic programme under founding director Harry Christophers.
The choir performs two sections from Josquin Desprez's Missa L'homme armé, one of several choral masterpieces based around a medieval song warning of the menace of a fearsome armed man, as well as the Sanctus from John Taverner's Missa 'O Michael', with its entrancing web of voices.
It interweaves these Renaissance masterpieces with striking yet sensuous choral music by Francis Poulenc: the four moving Motets pour un temps de pénitence, and the searing power of the cantata Figure humaine, written in Nazi-occupied France and set to texts smuggled secretly to the composer from the poet Paul Éluard.
Beautifully balanced and blended
The Scotsman, Festival 2013
Harry Christophers Conductor
Music by Josquin, Poulenc, Sheppard and Taverner