Sunday 16 October, 11am - 5pm at Ralli Hall


Choral Workshop: Évora, cradle of Portugal’s Golden Age

A workshop exploring music by Manuel Cardoso, Felipe de Magalhães and Duarte Lobo.

Date & Time: Sunday 16 October, 11am - 5pm

Ticket price: £20; under-25s £10

Venue: Ralli Hall


Évora, cradle of Portugal’s Golden Age
Music by Manuel Cardoso, Felipe de Magalhães and Duarte Lobo

Led by Dr David Allinson

At the highest point in the medieval walled city of Évora stands the largest medieval cathedral in Portugal, dedicated to the Assumption of the Mother of God. Towards the end of the 16th century this magnificent church, under mestre de capela Manuel Mendes, became the epicentre of the greatest national school of polyphony. The most celebrated composers of the Golden Age — Manuel Cardoso, Duarte Lobo and Filipe de Magalhães — sang and studied under Mendes, going on to hold the highest professional posts in Portugal and to write polyphony of astonishing suavity and emotional intensity, spicing the conservative idiom of Palestrina with adventurous harmonic colour.

While final repertoire choices are, as ever, dependent on the numbers signing up (strong tenor and bass sections required!), it is hoped that the day’s programme will include extracts from Cardoso’s Requiem a6, a portion of his Missa Miserere mihi Domine and a penitential motet such as Sitivit anima mea. It is hoped to include the emotionally shattering motet by Filipe de Magalhães, Commissa mea.

David Allinson is a freelance conductor, singer and academic with wide experience as a teacher and leader of choral workshops. His love is sacred choral music, with a speciality in the Renaissance period. His PhD focused on Tudor sacred music and his continuing research emphasises the social and devotional context of polyphony, in the past and today.

Based in Canterbury, David has led countless workshops, courses and singing holidays in the UK and Europe. Until 2019 he was Director of Music at Canterbury Christ Church University; before that he lectured in Music at Bristol and Oxford universities; he also has long experience of leading school and community choirs. David has directed the Renaissance Singers (London) since 2010.

David was a Choral Scholar while studying at Oxford, and subsequently held a professional singing post at a London church. He now deps occasionally at Canterbury Cathedral evensong.  Known for combining scholarship, technical know-how and humorous positivity in his workshops, recently he developed a new expertise in online talks as he waited for the pandemic to pass. While he found that he loved communicating that way, the return to live music-making has confirmed that nothing beats the joy of making music with other people in real time!