Photo: Nick Rutter

The Tallis Scholars

"Voices immaculately balanced and sublimely paced"

Jeremy Pound, BBC Music Magazine

Representation: UK, Ireland, Austria, Scandinavia, Iceland, Australia, New Zealand and Asia

The Tallis Scholars were founded in 1973 by their director, Peter Phillips. Through their recordings and concert performances, they have established themselves as the leading exponents of Renaissance sacred music throughout the world. Peter Phillips has worked with the ensemble to create, through good tuning and blend, the purity and clarity of sound which he feels best serves the Renaissance repertoire, allowing every detail of the musical lines to be heard. It is the resulting beauty of sound for which The Tallis Scholars have become so widely renowned.

The Tallis Scholars perform in both sacred and secular venues, giving around 80 concerts each year. In 2013 the group celebrated their 40th anniversary with a World Tour, performing 99 events in 80 venues in 16 countries. They now look ahead to their 50th anniversary in 2023. In 2020 Gimell Records celebrated 40 years of recording the group by releasing a remastered version of the 1980 recording of Allergri’s ‘Miserere’. As of the beginning of the cancellations caused by the COVID-19 crisis, the Tallis Scholars had made 2,327 appearances, worldwide.

2021/22 season highlights include performances in: Muziekgebouw aan’t IJ Amsteram, Oslo and RheinVokal Festivals,  Klangvokal Musikfestival Dortmund, Bremen Musikfest and tours of Italy, in addition to their usual touring schedule around the USA, Europe and the UK. As part of the Josquin des Prez’ 500th anniversary celebrations The Tallis Scholars sing all eighteen of the composer’s masses over the course of 4 days at the Boulez Saal in Berlin.

Recordings by The Tallis Scholars have attracted many awards throughout the world. In 1987 their recording of Josquin’s Missa La sol fa re mi and Missa Pange lingua received Gramophone magazine’s Record of the Year award, the first recording of early music ever to win this coveted award. In 1989 the French magazine Diapason gave two of its Diapason d’Or de l’Année awards for the recordings of a mass and motets by Lassus and for Josquin’s two masses based on the chanson L’Homme armé. Their recording of Palestrina’s Missa Assumpta est Maria and Missa Sicut lilium was awarded Gramophone’s Early Music Award in 1991; they received the 1994 Early Music Award for their recording of music by Cipriano de Rore; and the same distinction again in 2005 for their disc of music by John Browne. The Tallis Scholars were nominated for a Grammy Award in 2001, 2009 and 2010. In November 2012 their recording of Josquin’s Missa De beata virgine and Missa Ave maris stella received a Diapason d’Or de l’Année and in their 40th anniversary year they were welcomed into the Gramophone ‘Hall of Fame’ by public vote. In a departure for the group in Spring 2015 The Tallis Scholars released a disc of music by Arvo Pärt called Tintinnabuli which received great praise across the board. The latest recording of Josquin masses including Missa Hercules Dux Ferrarie was released in November 2020 and was winner of the BBC Music Magazine’s much coveted Recording of the Year Award in 2021. This disc was the last of nine albums in The Tallis Scholars’ project to record and release all Josquin’s masses before the 500th anniversary of the composer’s death in 2021.

Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact James Brown Management to ensure that you receive the most up to date version.  Email: Lucy Rice



The Tallis Scholars perform the 2020 NCEM Young Composers winning entries

June 14th, 2021

The Tallis Scholars recently performed the winning entries from the 2020 NCEM Young Composers Award at Cadogan Hall. Eilidh Owen won the 18 years and under category for her beautifully moving ‘As if there were no such cold thing’, and Fintan O’Hare, winner of the 19-25 category, brought us the exceptional ‘Come Passing Rain’. BothRead more ›

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The Tallis Scholars win the BBC Music Magazine Recording of the Year Award

April 14th, 2021

The Tallis Scholars have received the prestigious Recording of the Year award at the BBC Music Magazine Awards for the ninth and final album in their complete series of Josquin’s Masses. 34 years ago in 1987, The Tallis Scholars won Recording of the Year at the Gramophone Awards for the very first instalment in thisRead more ›

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‘Josquin has defined our career’: Peter Phillips on the end of a major recording project

December 10th, 2020

Article first appeared on Arts Desk. Read HERE. “I have never been a fan of recording “Complete Works”. These projects almost inevitably include music that one would not normally spend time and money on, just to claim that one has done it all. For this reason the Gimell catalogue, from the earliest days, will beRead more ›

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Josquin Mass Cycle

October 30th, 2020

On 30th October 2020 The Tallis Scholars release a new recording of Josquin’s Missa Hercules Dux Ferrarie, Missa D’ung aultre amer and Missa Faysant regretz. This album is the final release in the group’s project to record all of Josquin’s masses before the composer’s 500th anniversary in 2021. Founder and Director Peter Phillips comments: “WhenRead more ›

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Live From London

October 7th, 2020

The Tallis Scholars are performing a concert on 12 December as part of ‘Live From London – Christmas’, the new festive online vocal festival. The festival will broadcast 15 concerts across the festive period in December and January, filmed live from the heart of London and from venues across the world. Audiences will be ableRead more ›

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Live from London – Christmas, December 2020

“For some 47 years, this distinguished group of singers, led by its founder, Peter Phillips, has given the world a cappella singing at its finest. The ensemble has set a standard so high that a greater level of musical perfection is simply not conceivable”

Linda Holt, *****, Bachtrack

“The fact is that this concert offered some of the most radiant and intelligent singing of the Live from London series; performers at the top of their game gifting us some of the true glories of the polyphonic age.”

Colin Clarke, Seen and Heard International

Josquin: Missa Hercules Dux Ferrarie – Missa D’ung aultre amer – Missa Faysant regretz

“…a superb conclusion to a major achievement on disc, without any equivalent… We can only praise the careful production; the suave vocal scorings, which constantly inform the natural gravity of Josquin’s writing with a unique hedonism of sound; and indeed the scholarship which went into the editing of the manuscripts”

Benedict Hévry, ResMusica

Coming to the end of this absolutely remarkable odyssey, the listener can only be filled with admiration for Phillips’ vision and the enormous flexibility of The Tallis Scholars, who for nearly half a century have maintained their unchanging commitment to vocal and musical excellence.”

Tony Way, *****, Limelight

“Crowning glory to a cycle begun in 1986… These voices find an almost supernatural intensity of line, sonority, energy, and blend.”

Rebecca Tavener, *****, Choir & Organ

“An unmissable programme, sung by artists at the top of their profession: a god-like culmination indeed.”

David Fiala, Diapason (translated)

“A perfect showcase for this genius composer and The Tallis Scholars’ trademark luminosity.”

Record of the Week, Hannah French, BBC Radio 3 Record Review Extra

“glorious singing. Tonal purity, articulation, ensemble spirit: everything here is sheer perfection. Phillips’ unaccompanied voices bring passion and warmth to every note… This is a heavenly album.”

Geoff Brown, *****, The Times

“This reviewer is running out of superlatives for the music itself and for this choir’s performances of it.”

Richard Turbet, Early Music Review

“Peter Phillips directs expressive performances.”

Stephen Pettitt, The Sunday Times

“bringing the sequence to a radiant close” and “Immaculately produced, with scholarly notes and full translations.”

Graham Rickson, The Arts Desk

“This glossily perfect performance pings with relish and crackles with energy. A superb end to a magnificent cycle of recordings.”

Edward Breen, Gramophone Editor’s Choice

“As always with the Tallis Scholars, it’s immaculately sung. All told, a mighty achievement.”

Fiona Maddocks, The Observer 

Josquin: Missa Mater Patris – Bauldeweyn: Missa Da pacem

“Glorious music superbly performed and recorded.”

Andrew McGregor, BBC Radio 3

“…listening to The Tallis Scholars’ version is an electrifying, visceral experience.”

Graham Rickson, The Arts Desk

“This is glorious stuff indeed.”

Edward Breen, Gramophone, Editor’s Choice

“precision, clarity and conviction”

Kate Bolton-Porciatti, BBC Music Magazine, 5* performance, 5* recording

“persuasive singing, beautifully recorded”

Nicholas Kenyon, The Guardian / Observer

“this superlative disc … everything about it is the best”

Richard Turbet, Early Music Review

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Estella, Spain, September 2019

“The English team immediately impressed the public with its spectacular tone, as bright as it is perfect, with impeccable tuning…

Peter Phillips conducted the concert with his usual vitality, precision and attention to detail… allowing all the pieces of the puzzle to fall into place (trans.)”

Ritmo, September 2019

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St. Florian Monastery, Austria, July 2019

“There is a pleasure in music that whets the audience’s appetite: to either follow the complex unfolding of the polyphonic motets, or simply to lose oneself in the sound-world… Conclusion: An all-round perfect concert, full of precision and passion. (Trans.)”, July 2019

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US Spring Tour 2019


“perfect storm of singing… the esteemed English vocal ensemble delivered a brilliant program in all respects: use of the space and of the singers, and choice of literature… The afternoon was a revelation in capturing an audience’s mind.”

Oregon ArtsWatchBruce Browne and Daryl Browne, April 2019


“Tallis Scholars Shine in Music Inspired by The Sistine Chapel… The a capella polyphony of the ten Tallis Scholars vocalists was transcendent. one might even say, trance-inducing… Whether you are religious or not, this program of Renaissance polyphony sung by The Tallis Scholars was nothing short of heavenly.”

The Berkeley Daily Planet – James Roy MacBean, April 2019

BBC Prom, August 2011
“Those who stayed on for the late-night Prom by the Tallis Scholars had the benefit of the evening’s most compelling experience…. Inspiring and deeply moving”
                                                                                                                      The Telegraph, *****, August 2011

“One of the biggest audiences for a late-night prom I’ve ever seen… The 12 singers of the Tallis Scholars understand this musical world as well as anyone can today. They floated the long-limbed lines of the polyphony with unaffected directness, while Phillips shaped them in a perfectly understated way, with the Albert Hall’s resonance for once adding bloom rather than blur to the textures.”
                                                                                                                                The Guardian, August 2011

“[Victoria Requiem]…the audience sat rapt as Phillips’s team lifted us into heaven. The balance of parts; the expressive ease; the breathtaking beauty of their pianissimos!”
                                                                                                                               The Arts Desk, August 2011

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“This was a concert to treasure….. delivered by expert singers under their totally dedicated and inspiring conductor.”
                                                                                                                          Classical Source, August 2011

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Artist Manager

Lucy Rice
+44 (0) 1223 641752

Associate Artist Manager

Sarah Mansfield
+44 (0) 1223 641755