Saturday October 13, 2018 | 7:30pm (Pre-concert talk 6:45pm)
Christ Church Cathedral | Map
Vox Luminis is a prize winning Belgian early music vocal ensemble created in 2004 by Artistic Director Lionel Meunier. The ensemble performs over 60 concerts a year, appearing on stages in Belgium, across Europe and around the world. Since its inception, the ensemble has been defined by its unique sound, appealing as much through the personality of each timbre as it does through the color and the uniformity of the voices. The repertoire for this concert includes selections by Heinrich Schutz and Thomas Morley leading up to Henry Purcell’s exquisite and poignant Funeral Sentences and Elegy on the Death of Queen Mary.
“The ensemble of twelve singers, an organist and a violist, led by bass Lionel Meunier, is perfectly balanced…the particularity of Vox Luminis is the mastery of sound spatialization.” – Le Devoir
This concert is generously supported by the EMV Board of Directors
Click here for information about parking around / transiting to Christ Church Cathedral
(Introduction – Martin Luther’s “Mit Fried und Freud ich fahr dahin”)
(I) Concert in Form einer teutschen Begräbnis-Missa SWV 279
(II) Motette: Herr, wenn ich nur dich habe SWV 280
(III) Canticum B. Simeonis: Herr, nun lässest du deinen Diener in Friede fahren SWV 281
Music for the Funeral of Queen Elisabeth I
The first dirge Anthem
I am the resurrection and the life
I know that my Redeemer liveth
We brought nothing into this world
The second dirge Anthem
Man that is born of a woman
In the midst of life
Thou knowest, Lord Z. 58b
The third dirge Anthem
I heard a voice from heaven
Man that born of a woman Z. 27
In the midst of life Z. 17a
Thou knowest, Lord Z. 58c
O dive custos
Elegy upon the Death of the Queen Mary – Z. 504
Vox Luminis is a Belgian early music vocal ensemble created in 2004 by Artistic Director Lionel Meunier. The ensemble performs over 60 concerts a year, appearing on stages in Belgium, across Europe and around the world. Since its inception, the ensemble has been defined by its unique sound, appealing as much through the personality of each timbre as it does through the color and the uniformity of the voices. The size and composition of the group depends on the repertoire, with the core of soloists, mostly from the Royal Conservatory of the Hague, often joined by additional performers. The repertoire is essentially Italian, English and German and spans from the 16th to the 18th century.
Vox Luminis boasts 12 albums on the labels Alpha Classics, Ricercar, Ramée, and Musique en Wallonie. These recordings have enjoyed international critical acclaim, and have won numerous prizes including the prestigious Gramophone Recording of the Year in 2012 for the Musicalische Exequien by Heinrich Schütz.
Vox Luminis has performed extensively at festivals in Belgium, Europe and overseas, and has performed in prestigious venues such as Wigmore Hall in London, the Oratoire du Louvre in Paris, the Auditoria Nacional de Música in Madrid, the Concertgebouw in Brugge, the Muziekgebouw in Amsterdam, and the Tivoli Vredenburg in Utrecht. Residencies for the ensemble have been held at the Abbey of Sainte-Marie-des-Dames, the Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels, the Concertgebouw in Brugge, the prestigious Festival of Early Music in Utrecht, and the “Musique et Mémoire Festival.” In 2017, the Aldeburgh Festival in England, founded by Benjamin Britten, hosted the ensemble for the first time.
Recent international highlights include performances at the Berlin and Cologne Philharmonics, Arnstadt’s Bachkirche, the Thüringer Bachwochen and the Bachfest Leipzig. 2017 marked the group’s debut in the grand Salle Henry Leboeuf in Brussels, to inaugurate the beginning of a five-year residency. In the coming years, Vox Luminis will also be “huisartiest” at the Concertgebouw in Brugge.
Most recently, the ensemble released recordings of Handel’s Dixit Dominus and J.S. Bach’s Magnificat. In addition to working with its own orchestra, Vox Luminis also frequently collaborates with other internationally renowned ensembles and orchestras. In 2017, such collaborations have included projects with the Franco-Canadian Ensemble Masques and with the Freiburger Barockorchester.
One project, one objective, one path: introduce today’s audiences to early vocal music, passionately conveying its quintessence and touching the light through the voice. Vox Luminis.
Vox Luminis receives support from Federation Wallonia-Brussels, the city of Namur and Namur Confluent Culture and is recognized by the Art and Life Tours.
Lionel Meunier, music director
Lionel Meunier is a singer and the founder/artistic director of the early music vocal ensemble Vox Luminis. Being passionate about music from a very young age, he started his musical education in the city of Clamecy (France) with the trumpet, recorder and solfège. Lionel then continued his studies at Institut Supérieur de Musique et de Pédagogie (the Superior Institute of Music and Pedagogy – IMEP) in Namur where he earned his degree in recorder with great distinction. He took classes from Tatiana Babut du Marès and Hugo Reyne, and masterclasses with Jean Tubéry.
Meunier then focused his attention on vocal studies with Rita Dams and Peter Kooij at the Royal Conservatory of the Hague (NL). At the same time, he started a career as a concert musician. He was soon in demand as a soloist, and he joined prestigious ensembles like Collegium Vocale Ghent (P. Herreweghe), World Youth Choir, Arsys Bourgogne (P. Cao), Amsterdam Baroque Choir (T. Koopmann), the Chamber Choir of Namur, the Favoriti de la Fenice (J. Tubéry), the Soloists of the Chamber Choir of Namur, Cappella Pratensis (S. Bull) and the soloists of the Dutch Bach Vereniging (J. Van Veldhoven).
Over the past two years, Lionel Meunier has been increasingly in demand from many ensembles throughout Europe as coach, conductor and artistic leader. His passionate yet thoughtful approach to the early music and a capella repertoire, combined with the understanding of and respect for the singers, has allowed him to achieve progressively ever-higher standards. Moreover, he is jury member for many international festivals and competitions.
In 2013, Lionel Meunier was given the title of Namur Person of the Year for Culture.
Just as mindful about education, Lionel and Vox Luminis regularly offer masterclasses, coaching sessions and conferences on the repertoire from the end of the Renaissance period and from the Baroque period.