Waltham Madrigals

a small group of experienced singers,
based in Waltham St Lawrence

 

 

 

We enjoy singing secular unaccompanied part-songs, and we focus on the rich repertoire of English madrigals from the late 16th and early 17th centuries, plus Italian and French music from the same period.

For variety we also include other material composed right up to modern times, including e.g. Lennon & McCartney...

We aim for a high standard, but first and foremost to entertain the audience, to enjoy ourselves, and to raise money for charitable causes.

We rehearse twice a month on 2nd and 4th Sundays 5.30pm-7pm, and we perform whenever we get an opportunity, often in collaboration with other groups.

at the Wokingham Food and Drink Festival...

 

at Beaconsfield Festival of Choirs...

 

Recently we have performed in concerts at St Mary's Slough, at Christchurch Marlow, Beaconsfield Festival and at the WSL Choral Festival.

Our performances are always to attract charitable donations, including local and international causes, and we have raised several thousand pounds over the past few years.

We are a small group because of the nature of the material, and we prefer not to exceed sixteen, but we welcome enquiries from singers with strong independent voices and at least moderate sight-reading ability.

Numbers are limited, but we currently have a vacancy or two.

For further details contact: Simon Shaw on 07717 472974 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weelkes Madrigal - Top of the Pops c1600

So what is a Madrigal?

Madrigals are "secular, unaccompanied part-songs, on a poetic theme in the vernacular language", derived from an earlier Italian style, and popular in England in the late 16th and early 17th centuries.

The late Elizabethan period saw a huge outpouring of English composing talent, including many famous and not-so famous names, which English madrigals demonstrate intensely and concisely. They range from the irrepressibly happy to the extremely mournful, and just like modern popular music, are on the endlessly recurring themes of love, sex, death and dancing (although not necessarily in that order).

Waltham Madrigals are dedicated to bringing this enjoyable but little-known material to jaded modern ears, and we have been doing so with increasing frequency and success since 2007.  We are always on the look-out for opportunities to support or complement other performers, whether musical or dramatic, or even to provide entertainment with a historical atmosphere at social events.