Great works: Tallis's Spem in alium

Course Dates: 04/08/21
Time: 14:00 - 16:00
Location: Online
Tutors: 
Explore the history of this monumental 40-part motet, the largest work by any Tudor composer.
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
26 people have enrolled on this course
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SKU
175373
Full fee £29.00 Senior fee £23.00 Concession £18.00

Course Code: MD040D

Wed, day, 04 Aug - 04 Aug '21

Duration: 1 session

Or call to enrol:020 7831 7831

Any questions? music@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 7492 2630

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

Spem in alium is an iconic work, written for 40 individual parts the voices enter one by one but soon work together to make waves of music. Many modern performances take place with the singers standing in a circle, but what do we really know about this work and its early performances?

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

- A brief overview of the composer Thomas Tallis
- The surviving manuscript sources for Spem in alum
- Meaning of the text
- Musical structure in this work
- Comparisons with other large-scale renaissance works
- Performance options: then and now.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Form an overview of the history and format(s) of this work
- recognize the structure of the piece
- feel confident using some technical language to describe this work
- observe key features of modern recorded performances.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This course is suitable for absolute beginners. However, we will look at some music manuscripts and learn to identify key features of music notation (how many voices are singing, etc…) so this course will be most suitable for those who are curious and ambitious to learn.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

This is an online course:
Sessions will be held via video-conference (Zoom) and comprise a combination of lecture, discussion, quizzes, guided listening, video and score study. Course materials (handouts, scores, links to online videos) will be shared via Google Classroom.
You will be encouraged to do extra reading and listening outside class.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

You will need a good internet connection and a computer with microphone & webcam. If using a tablet it will need a screen large enough for you to comfortably view the class handouts.
You may also wish to purchase some of the music books or recordings discussed in class, links to these materials will be available online after the session.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

To find out more about music history classes Music history courses in London and online which lists our full programme of classes ordered by term, and by day of the week. You may then click on each title to read the full course outline.

Edward Breen Tutor Website

Edward teaches music history and music theory at City lit where he is Head of Programme: Advanced Studies in the School of Performing Arts. His specialism is early music (medieval, renaissance and baroque periods) and he completed his PhD in historical musicology at King's College London (2013) on the performance of medieval music. Outside of teaching, Edward is a regular contributor to Gramophone magazine and has lectured for Dartington International Summer School, London's Southbank Centre and The British Library. He has also worked as a researcher for BBC Proms and written for the journal Early Music (OUP). His recent essays are published in: The Cambridge Encyclopaedia of Historical Performance in Music, (Cambridge University Press); The Montpellier Codex: Studies in Medieval and Renaissance Music 16 (Boydell Press); Recomposing the Past: Representations of Early Music on Stage and Screen (Ashgate 2018); and 30-Second Classical Music (Ivy Press).

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.