Founded and directed by Freddie Crowley, Corvus Consort is a UK-based vocal ensemble comprising some of the country’s most talented young professional singers. Described as “one of the most innovative and adventurous vocal ensembles presently performing” by Tortoise Media, Corvus’s refreshing combination of musical excellence, passionate performance and unstuffy presentation makes them hugely popular with audiences up and down the country.
Corvus’s innovative programming and extensive versatility see them perform in a wide variety of genres and styles, ranging from Renaissance polyphony and Baroque motets right through to 20th century music and contemporary choral works. The Consort’s flexible combination of voices also allows them to carefully tailor their size and forces for each particular performance context.
In addition to frequent appearances as an a-cappella ensemble, Corvus places particular emphasis on its instrumental collaborations. Ongoing projects include voices and saxophones with the Ferio Saxophone Quartet, upper voices and harp with Louise Thomson, and contemporary explorations of Renaissance soundworlds with instrumental duo Music on the Edge.
In collaboration with the Ferio Saxophone Quartet, Corvus Consort released its debut CD ‘Revoiced’ in July 2022 on Chandos Records, to great acclaim across press and radio. ‘Revoiced’ explores the magical blend of voices and saxophones, bringing new colours to early music with a set of Baroque and Renaissance works uniquely reimagined by Freddie Crowley, described as “intriguing and strikingly effective arrangements” by BBC Radio 3 Record Review. Four works by living composers nestle amongst these early music gems: a new piece by Owain Park re-interpreting Allegri’s iconic Miserere, together with newly-created versions of existing works by Sarah Rimkus, Roderick Williams and James MacMillan. Corvus’s second disc for Chandos is due for release in 2024.
Alongside their dynamic performances of core vocal repertoire, Corvus has quickly developed a strong track record for championing new music and commissioning some of the most exciting young composers in the UK and beyond. For Christmas 2020, twelve young composers were commissioned to write twelve miniature carols for twelve voices based on the well-known song The Twelve Days of Christmas, as part of a festive project entitled “Twelve Composers Composing”. Corvus’s latest new music project “Byrd Takes Flight” commemorates William Byrd’s 400th anniversary in 2023 with four new works for voices and instruments, placing Byrd’s compositional voice into direct dialogue with some of today’s brightest artistic voices. Part of Corvus’s ongoing collaboration with Music on the Edge and featuring commissions by Anna Semple, Derri Joseph Lewis, Shruthi Rajasekar and Harry Baker, the project saw its premiere at the 2023 Whiddon Autumn Festival and will feature in a series of concerts in 2024.
Since making its first appearance in 2018, Corvus Consort has enjoyed performances including London’s King’s Place, Chiltern Arts Festival, Church Stretton Festival, Little Missenden Festival, Winchfield Festival, Kings Lynn Festival, Music on the Quantocks, Simonsbath Festival and Borough Theatre Abergavenny, as well as becoming Ensemble-in-Residence at Devon’s Whiddon Autumn Festival on the festival’s inception in 2021. Recent highlights include a Bach programme alongside violinist Rachel Podger at Dorchester Arts and Exeter Cathedral, and a performance with Ferio Saxophone Quartet at Stour Music Festival. 2024 will see Corvus return to Exeter Cathedral, Music@Wellhayes and the Whiddon Autumn Festival.