Early Music for Early Years
Relaxed morning events for babies, pre-school children, their parents, grandparents, and carers
The idea to include a concert of medieval and traditional lullabies in the 2022 Festival came from two sources:
During the Covid lockdowns, singer Clare Norburn devised an online project teaching lullabies from a wide range of cultural traditions to grandparents who were at that time unable to have face-to-face contact with their grandchildren.
During SNEMF 2021, festival director Rachel Stott noticed several audience members who had attended concerts with babies or toddlers leaving early in the programme because the children had become restless. Having read about Clare's Lullabies project, Rachel was inspired to design an early music event specially geared to the very young and their musically-hungry relatives.
The aim of SNEMF's Early Music for Early Years series is to provide high quality performance by period instrument players and singers for a mixed generation audience in a relaxed atmosphere. Summer 2022's Medieval and Traditional Lullabies was followed by Baroque Lullabies in November 2022 and Spring Lullabies in March 2023. The summer festival will present Elizabethan Lullabies. In the long term we hope to secure funding to maintain this series of three concerts per year, keeping ticket prices affordable.
Concerts in the Early Music for Early Years series
Programme included lullabies by Thomas Tallis and Anthony Holborne, cradle songs from around the world, and Forest Dreams, inspired by Michael Rosen's new book, The Big Dreaming, performed by Rachel Godsill, soprano and Rachel Stott, viola d'amore.
THE TELLING - Clare Norburn, singer, and Jean Kelly, harpist, perform medieval and traditional lullabies from a range of cultures. Clare and Jean delighted their audience at our 2022 festival, and this spring concert had a hugely appreciative audience, young and old.
SOPRIOLA - Rachel Godsill, singer and Rachel Stott, viola d'amore and viola angelica, performed familiar cradle songs originating in the 17th century alongside lively baroque dance tunes, a ballad about a dragon and music to soothe the soul by Henry Purcell, Barbara Strozzi and Tarquinio Merula.