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William Byrd

William Byrd (Composer)

Born: c. 1540, London

Died: 4th July 1623, Stondon Massey

Nationality: English

William Byrd was an English composer of the Renaissance. Widely considered to be one of the greatest composers of the Renaissance and one of the greatest British composers, he had a huge influence on composers both from his native England and those on the continent. He wrote in many of the forms current in England at the time, including various types of sacred and secular polyphony, keyboard (the so-called Virginalist school), and consort music. Although he produced sacred music for Anglican services, sometime during the 1570s he became a Roman Catholic and wrote Catholic sacred music later in his life.

Further Reading: Byrd

Interview, Owain Park on performing and dramatising Byrd's sacred music

The Artistic Director of The Gesualdo Six talks about the group's new anniversary-year album of Byrd, and their exciting new staged performance based around the music of Catholicism-in-hiding during England's Tudor era.

Interview, David Skinner on Byrd's 'Songs of Sundrie Natures'

The artistic director of Alamire talks about his new recording with Fretwork of Byrd's 1589 collection of church and domestic songs, complementing an album from two years ago in which they explored the previous volume from 1588.

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