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  • Writer's pictureContinuo Foundation





We reached an exciting milestone in October - the successful completion of all 23 projects supported with our first round grants! Round 2 got off to a strong start as well. In all, October projects included thirteen live concerts with an audience (some also filmed), and the final Barnstorming! filmed concert. The figures so far:

  • £165,500 disbursed to 25 ensembles

  • 584 musicians engaged since April 2021

After The Telling’s six-location tour of concert-drama ‘I, Spie’ - which brought early music to new audiences in Liverpool, Wolverhampton and Cumbria - they shared this:

"I wanted to say what a huge difference you have made to the early music world. Of course, there is a huge need now but even before the pandemic there was a gap of support for many of the smaller ensembles who are so often unable or inexperienced in tapping into funding. You’ve totally changed that and created a fairer playing field for smaller organisations. Thank you!"

We also wished to share this feedback from a member of the ensemble Joglaresa:

“As a recent graduate at the time the pandemic began, it was unsettling, trying to find motivation and to not just become defeated by the whole situation. The work Joglaresa carried out following the award of your grant in March meant that I found a purpose for music again and felt like I was working with others in a meaningful and creative way.”



We are making great progress toward our objective of securing a significant proportion of the funds for our grants in 2022 through planned giving and advance commitments. We have already received donations and pledges of more than £80,000 for next year.

More advance and multi-year commitments will allow us to be more efficient and effective i.e. plan earlier and spend more time on work that is focused on the musicians and ensembles, and ultimately will lead to more of the strong projects we assess being supported.

Whether you are considering a single or a multi-year gift to support Continuo's work, Tina would love to hear from you on



Careful analysis of the data gathered from the 23 projects supported by our first round grants has revealed some interesting insights about the UK period performance sector. The 23 projects resulted in 388 musician engagements (ie. a musician being hired to perform in part or all of a project) ranging from a single concert, to concert series, to an entire week of rehearsals and recording sessions. The breakdown of the 388 musician engagements in terms of individual musicians is as follows:

326 different musicians (259 instrumentalists and 67 singers) participated in one or more projects. Of these 326 individuals, 54 musicians participated in two projects, 7 musicians participated in 3 projects and 2 musicians participated in 4 projects.

In addition, among the 125 grant applications Continuo Foundation received in 2021, there were requests from 82 different UK period-instrument ensembles. Thirty-seven of these groups now comprise our vibrant Continuo grantee community, which we aim to grow with our Round 3 and Round 4 grants in 2022!




Ex Cathedra – ‘Beethoven’s Funeral’

Ex Cathedra and the Concert Trombone Quartette gave an astonishing performance at Symphony Hall in Birmingham, recreating Beethoven’s funeral in Vienna in 1827 with readings and music, including Mozart’s Requiem, from the day.


The Telling – ‘I, Spie’

Following The Telling's successful tour of this brilliant concert-drama to Finsbury Park, Liverpool, Wolverhampton, Grange-over-Sands, Brighton and Hounslow, the professionally-filmed performance will be released online on the 25th November. Tickets are available here.


Spiritato – ‘Inspiring Bach’

In their first collaboration with The Marian Consort, Spiritato explored the thrilling sound world of the natural trumpet in a programme of music which inspired JS Bach. The concert was also filmed, so please stay tuned for the streaming date...



The York Early Music International Young Artists Competition supports emerging professional careers by offering opportunities for performances, recording and broadcasting. Ensembles must have a minimum of 3 members with an average age of 33 or under. Prizes include a CD recording professionally produced by Linn Records; £1,000 cash and a paid concert as part of the 2023 York Early Music Festival. The entry deadline is Friday 14th January. More information can be found on the NCEM website:


A full listing of our grantee events with confirmed venues and dates through March 2022 is now available on our Events Calendar.


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