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First Encounters - Musical Journeys

First Encounters - Musical Journeys from the Dawn of the Global Age - Concert Series (May - December 2023)
An exploration of the fascinating musical links between China and Western Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries. These cultural exchanges began when the Jesuit missionary Matteo Ricci travelled to Beijing 1601. His diplomatic gifts for the Wanli Emperor included a harpsichord. For the next two hundred years as numerous points of contact between the two cultures developed, music was a constant witness and musicians travelled in both directions across continents.

The proposal builds on research by Yeo Yat-Soon into both Chinese and European musical sources. As an additional facet of the emerging global world we include music by two composers of African descent: Ignatius Sancho and Joseph Bologne. Yeo Yat-Soon is an experienced presenter of concerts and will introduce our unusual programmes with historical background and cultural discussion.

We aim to present six self-promoted concerts. The funding for which we applying from the Continuo Foundation is to underwrite the series. The venues have been regularly used by members of the ensemble and where we have an established performing tradition.These include:
St Mary’s Church, Hampton (this venue has live-streamed facilities)
University of Birmingham, Barber Concert Series
Church of St Michael and All Angels, Chiswick
Walpole Chapel Suffolk
Strawberry Hill House, Twickenham
Fenton House, Hampstead.
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