Philip van Wilder (c.1500–53) was a Dutch lutenist and composer who became Henry VIII’s favourite musician. Although a major figure in his own day (and also comfortably off), he has passed almost unnoticed from musical history.
This recording presents his complete surviving sacred music and some of his chansons – which Reformation Protestants found useful to kickstart their new, simpler religious repertoire.
The programme sets him in historical context: downstream from Josquin and Gombert, collaborating with Tallis and a formative influence on Byrd.
Cantores is a choir formed from graduates of Exeter University by Dr David Allison which meets several times a year for specific projects, specialising in the music of the Renaissance. Dr David Allinson is a conductor, singer and musicologist specialising in the history and performance of Renaissance choral music. Appointed Director of Music at Canterbury Christ Church University in 2013, he was previously Teaching Fellow in Music at Bristol University. With a wide experience as a choral director and choir trainer, he leads workshops and summer schools around the UK and in Europe. As well as leading Cantores, he performs and records with the Renaissance Singers in London.
“While Cantores is not one of the top choirs I really like the sound they make. The vocal quality I would describe as airy. Intonation is reliable as is diction. They are largely Exeter graduates and renaissance music is their specialist area.” MusicWeb International, 2nd January 2014