Sirinu / Sirinew
Since forming in 1992 Sirinu have given several hundred concerts, including three Early Music Network Tours (1992, 1994 and a 1996 education tour), and British Council Tours of South America, Asia, Northern Africa, Macedonia. Well-known in their own right as individual performers and musicologists Sirinu’s members are Sara Stowe, Matthew Spring, Jon Banks and Henry Stobart, joined by other musicians for larger projects. They have made numerous recordings for the BBC, including a highly-acclaimed series ‘The Road to Toledo’ for Radio 3, and CDs for Hyperion and Chandos. Sirinu provided music for an Oscar-nominated Ardmann Video (Wat’s Pig) and for Walt Disney Films (Just Visiting). The group has appeared at many European Early Music festivals, and have a repertory of a dozen programmes at any one time. Their concerts have been described as ‘A tour de force of sound, colour, movement and dance…’ and ‘a brilliant synthesis of scholarship, musicianship, vivacity of performance….’
Current projects include a new programme ‘A Scandinavian Christmas' based on the Piae Cantiones ecclesiasticae et scholasticae veterum (The Old Bishops’ Pious Church and School Songs). The Latin songs cover all the main celebrations of the year starting with Christmas, and ending with a song on the miseries of student life. Many of the tunes were centuries old by 1581 and had always been associated with students’ travels between different universities, and to and from their homelands. All have a haunting timeless quality born of constant use over centuries.
Sirinu also perform as Sirinew, which programmes modern pieces alongside early repertoire. Their current project Sounding Space for Peninsular Arts includes music by Vincenzo Galileo and astronomer John Dunstable, set alongside contemporary pieces inspired by ideas of space. Sirinew perform Howard Skempton’s `The Man Hurdy-gurdy and Me’ and other contemporary works including Cornish composer Graham Fitkin’s ‘Far’, Giacinto Scelsi’s ‘Songs of the Capricorn’, Gyorgy Ligeti’s ‘Continuum’ and James Saunders mysterious `It May Appear or Not Appear’.
Other recent programmes include `The Class of 1511’ - Spanish Music of the Early Renaissance’; `From Bawds to Bards’ – Music from Shakespeare’s England’ and ‘All Goodly Sports – The music of Henry VIII’.
Sininew playing newly commissioned piece by Howard Skempton ‘The Man Hurdy-Gurdy and Me'
Sirinu: All Goodly Sports