10 - 14 December 2018


"The Temple Church in London has a beautifully formed festival of Christmas music that ventures off the beaten track.”

The Telegraph



Temple Music Foundation and Hazard Chase have unveiled the 2018 Temple Winter Festival, which takes place from 10 to 14 December 2018 at Temple Church, London. The festival continues to bring together some of the UK’s finest talent from the choral world.


Temple Winter Festival has attracted some of the finest artists in choral music over the years, including the BBC Singers, Polyphony and the Tallis Scholars, who return for this year’s festival. The concerts take place in the magnificent and centrally located Temple Church, built in the 12th century by the Knights Templar. 


Temple Winter Festival are grateful for the generous support of our sponsors, Lark Music



Festival Programme

Photo: Patrick Allen

Photo: Chris Christodoulou



Monday 10 December, 19.30
Temple Church Choir, Temple Singers
Roger Sayer, Director
Greg Morris, Organ


Warlock: Bethlehem Down

Plainsong: O Sapientia

Britten: Corpus Christi Carol

Tavener: God is with us

Plainsong: O Rex Gentium

Samuelson: Ave Maris Stella

Britten: Hymn to the virgin

Plainsong: Salve Regina

Tippett: Magnificat

Cornelius: Three Kings

Chilcott: Shepherd's Carol

Peacock: Venite, Gaudate

Ridout: Sacred Songs, set 2

Gardner: Tomorrow shall be my dancing day

Lloyd: I saw three ships

Perry, arr. Bertalot: Calypso Carol

Arr. Darbourne: All I want for Christmas

Arr. Gritton: Have yourself a merry little Christmas

Adams: O holy night

Arr. Darbourne: Sleigh ride

Arr. Chilcott: We wish you a merry Christmas


The music in this concert reflects the diversity of Temple Church Choir. The concert begins with the choir above in the Triforium and throughout the first half, they will move around the building exploring the full extent of the acoustics that this historic 12th-century church has to offer. The second half is a much lighter and glittering affair which will set the Christmas season off to a warm and joyful start.



Ticket prices: £30, £25, £20, £10



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Tuesday 11 December, 13.00


Tom Herring, Artistic Director


Praetorius: Es ist ein Ros entsprungen

Wier: Drop down, ye Heavens

Tallis: O nata lux

Byrd: Vigilate

MacMillan: O Radiant Dawn                       

Byrd: O magnum mysterium - Beata virgo

Briggs: Ave regina caelorum

Britten: Hymn to the Virgin

Tallis: Videte miraculum

Fayrfax: Missa Tecum principium: Gloria

Tarney: The Waiting Sky

Tarney: Balulalow

Sheppard: Verbum caro


"Sansara slips easily into the elite ranks of exceptional performers... breathtaking"

Choir and Organ).


Conjuring an aura of mystery and excitement, SANSARA explores the anticipation of Christmas, with a programme inter-weaving works by masters of the Renaissance with 20th and 21st century composers.



Ticket price: £10



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Photo: Theo Williams



Tuesday 11 December, 19.30


ORA Singers
Suzi Digby, Director


Matthew Martin: Ecce concipies
Plainchant: Rorate caeli
Howard Skempton: Adam Lay Y Bounden
Thomas Tallis: Videte Miraculum
James Burton: Magnificat
Medieval: Coventry Carol
Richard Allain: Lully Lulla Thou Little Tiny Child
Philip Van Wilder: Pater Noster
Roxanna Panufnik: Magnificat (St Pancras Service)
Medieval: Now may we singen
Cecilia McDowall: Now may we singen
William Byrd: Laetentur caeli
Tomas Luis de Victoria: Ave Maria a 8
Mark Simpson: Ave Maria*
Judith Weir: Magnificat
Medieval: There Is No Rose
Ben Rowarth: There Is No Rose
Kim Porter: Christmas Eve
Giovanni Palestrina: Alma Redemptoris
Arvo Part: Magnificat
Jonathan Rathbone: The Oxen
Tobias Frank: Les Anges
Steven Sametz: Gaudete


Based around four beautiful settings of the text of the Magnificat, ORA Singers presents a typically inventive programme. Music in honour of the Virgin Mary sits alongside material celebrating the wonder and joy of the birth of Jesus. This exceptional ensemble gives its own take on the Christmas story with works ranging from the sublimely still to the riotously energetic.



Ticket prices: £30, £25, £20, £10



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*ORA Singers commission 



Wednesday 12 December, 13.00


Roger Sayer, Organ


Mendelssohn: Sonata no. 1 in F minor

Elert: Symphonic fantasia Jesu, meine Freude

Brahms: From eleven Choral preludes op. 122

  1. Mein Jesu, der du mich

  2. Herzliebster Jesu

  3. O Welt, ich muss dich lassen 

  4. Schmücke dich, o liebe Seele 

  5. Es ist ein Ros entsprungen

Reubke: Sonata on the 94th Psalm



German romantic repertoire for the organ is rich and varied, and some of the composers in this programme – Mendelssohn & Bach - need little introduction. Mendelssohn's first sonata shows a great affinity with Bach whilst Brahms’ Eleven chorale Preludes were his final works, having turned to organ music late in life. Less well known perhaps, though no less impressive, is Karg Elert, whose Symphonic works are exciting and vivid. The Reubke sonata is one of the most remarkable pieces of organ music. A pupil of Liszt, Reubke died at the age of 24 leaving behind a work that is of immense power and maturity. 



Ticket price: Free to attend



Photo: Sim Canetty-Clarke

Photo: Nick Rutter



Thursday 13 December, 19.30


The Tallis Scholars
Peter Phillips, Director


Palestrina: Hodie Christus natus est

Palestrina: Missa Hodie Christus natus est (Kyrie and Gloria)

Muhly: Premiere

Nesbett: Magnificat

Palestrina: Missa Hodie Christus natus est (Credo, Sanctus and Agnus dei)

Byrd: Lullaby

H. Praetorius: Magnificat V (with In dulci jubilo)


This programme is formed around one of Palestrina's most joyful double-choir masses, based on his own motet. Its title tells you all you need to know about the time of year it was intended for. It frames two major settings of the Magnificat; Byrd's matchless Lullaby; and an exciting new commission, specially written for the Tallis Scholars, by Nico Muhly. This really is a seasonal feast.



This performance will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3. 



Ticket prices: £40 £35, £30, £15



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Friday 14 December, 19.30


Collegium Musicum of London
Temple Players
Greg Morris, Director
Grace Davidson, Soprano
James Hall, Alto
James Way, Tenor
William Thomas, Bass


Handel: Messiah

Handel’s iconic masterpiece remains as popular today as it has ever been. We are thrilled that we are able to present it in this year’s festival with the highly respected Collegium Musicum of London, directed by Greg Morris, and a wonderful line-up of talented, exciting soloists.

Ticket prices: £45, £35, £25, £15


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Performer Previews


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