"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. In 2020 Gimell Records celebrated 40 years of recording the group by releasing a remastered version of the 1980 recording of Allegri’s ‘Miserere’. As they celebrate their 50th Birthday the desire to hear this group in all corners of the globe is as strong as ever. They have now performed well over 2500 concerts.
2023/24 season highlights include performances in Japan, the USA, Paris, Dresden, Ravenna and Helsinki; a number of appearances in London as well as their usual touring schedule in Europe and the UK. In a monumental project to mark Josquin des Prez’ 500th anniversary The Tallis Scholars sang all eighteen of the composer’s masses over the course of 4 days at the Boulez Saal in Berlin in July 2022, only to repeat this feat in Utrecht in summer 2023.
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 Grammy Awards 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.
A 2020 release including Missa Hercules Dux Ferrarie 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. It was the winner of the BBC Music Magazine’s much coveted Recording of the Year Award in 2021 and the 2021 Gramophone Early Music Award. Their latest Gimell release in October 2023 is of music by John Sheppard.
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: Jessica Kinney
50 years ago on the 3 November 1973 a choral ensemble was born. A twenty-year-old Peter Phillips, a student at Oxford, had an idea of a sound in his head that he thought would suit the Renaissance sacred polyphony that he heard regularly sung in chapel. He has spent the last 50 years honing that…Read more ›
The Tallis Scholars release an album of music by John Sheppard to mark their 50th Birthday. Peter Phillips comments: The Tallis Scholars’ first Sheppard disc, released in 1989, created a new icon of English renaissance polyphony – Media vita. This is our second Sheppard album, featuring such masterpieces as the Missa Cantate, and his only votive…Read more ›
Having returned from a 3 week tour of the USA performing their 50th Birthday programme, The Tallis Scholars are now readying themselves for the UK and Europe leg of their Birthday celebrations. Find out more here.
In 2014 John Tavener would have celebrated his 70th Birthday but sadly he died in 2013. The Tallis Scholars had a long association with John. To mark the tenth anniversary of his death, they present a special programme of his music, ‘Taverner to Tavener’, containing two pieces written for the Tallis Scholars, alongside music by…Read more ›
Glowing reviews for the Tallis Scholars’ recent tour in Australia
November 2nd, 2022
After a hugely successful Australian tour, The Tallis Scholars have been receiving some wonderful reviews of their concerts in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney. Suzannah Conway for Limelight “[A]stonishing technical skills and quality of these elite voices […] Phillips directed with complete command of the complexity of the piece”. “[A] splendid and powerful performance by singers…Read more ›
“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”