The Sydney chamber choir Bel a cappella kicks off its 2018 season with a bit of a coup, presenting the Australian premiere of Caroline Shaw’s work To the Hands . Written as a response to Buxtehude’s Membra Jesu nostri patientis sanctissima , it is programmed alongside the composer’s Ad manus, Fauré’s Requiem and Bach’s Partita in D Minor. Limelighttalks to Bel’s Artistic and Musical Director, Anthony Pasquill, about the concert.
Although you perform a range of music spanning the ages, would you say that Bel a cappella has a particular affinity for specific composers, or a period of composition?
Over the years the choir has performed music by a wide range of composers including Johannes Ockeghem, Clemens non Papa and Claudio Monteverdi through to more contemporary composers such as Tõnu Kõrvits ,Bernat Vivancos, Galina Grigorjeva and Gavin Bryars. I have always wanted to explore new works and to challenge myself as a young conductor and am fortunate to have an ensemble that is willing to come on these ambitious journeys with me.
What unites the works you’ll perform in your first concert? What gave you the idea to program Fauré, Bach and Shaw alongside one other?
Surprisingly Fauré’s Requiem...