Thomas and Mary-Jannet formed Ensemble Hesperi (‘Evening Stars’) as a duo ensemble while studying on the Masters programme at the Royal College of Music, where they performed regularly as part of the Historical Performance Department. As a duo, Mary-Jannet and Thomas were selected for the Brighton Early Music Festival Live scheme for 2016-2017, and performed at the Brugge and Utrecht Early Music Fringe Festivals regularly 2017-2018: in 2017 they won the Utrecht Fringe’s Audience Award from over 70 performances of European young ensembles. After several successful years as a duo, the ensemble expanded in 2019 to welcome new members Magdalena Loth-Hill and Florence Petit. Last year, Hesperi's unique collaborative project with Kathleen Gilbert, Highland Dancer, "The Pheasant's Eye", was featured by Classical Music Magazine and by Classic FM, for whom they recorded in studio in February 2019. The ensemble was selected as Britten Years Young Artists for 2020, on the "Chamber Music in Residence" scheme at Snape Maltings, and as ‘Take Note’ Artists for the Chiltern Arts Festival. Ensemble Hesperi also has an interest in musical outreach, and performs regularly for those who can't otherwise hear live music; they have developed a strong relationship with Chelsea and Westminster Hospital's charity, CW+, and were invited to perform at the Celebration service for the Tercentenary of the hospital at Westminster Abbey in May 2019. 

Ensemble Hesperi is a dynamic and innovative Early Music ensemble based in London, dedicated to promoting unpublished and previously undiscovered Scottish Baroque repertoire, and in exploring the fascinating links between Scotland, London, and the continent through Baroque music during the eighteenth century. In 2019, the ensemble embarked on a new project, ‘The Pheasant’s Eye’, supported by a Lottery grant from Arts Council England, exploring the lives of Scottish composers through Highland dance music. This project also created educational resources based on Scottish composer James Oswald’s ‘Airs for the Seasons’, a collection of 96 airs, each named after a flower. This initiative hopes to introduce this wonderful Early Music to new audiences of every age and background. Throughout 2019, the ensemble presented performances and Highland dance workshops at several festivals and music societies, including at Lichfield Festival, Petworth Festival, Newcastle University Early Music series, and Brighton Early Music Festival.

 

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