Timeline Songs produces inspiring and accessible community singing events that bring together ancient and modern music in some of the UK’s most beautiful historic venues. Our artistically ambitious and participatory programmes breathe new life into old music and inject an invigorating shot of contemporary imagination into the annals of history, through the creation of new works inspired by historical themes.
Founded in 2012 by composer Stef Conner, Timeline Songs was established with a mission to break down perceived barriers between musical styles, by focusing on the deep connections that unify different types of music and by demystifying both obscure ancient and challenging modern music through education and participation. Along with our two resident heritage choirs in Cambridge and Surrey, we proudly host concerts, workshops and themed come and sing events, in which participants and audiences visit an unusual historic building, exploring its epoch and the stories connected with it, and singing music from and inspired by the period.
Highlights of the Timeline Songs programme thus far have included lute songs from scratch in a renaissance refectory, a medieval bake-off, musical Norman church tours led by local historians, Old English language lessons and performances of contemporary music with Old English texts, Vaughan Williams’ music performed in his childhood home, compositions inspired by the natural world in the picturesque Surrey Hills, music by English composers who died in the Great War performed amid World War I frescoes, Victorian art songs and folk music, and lots of medieval music, including Saxon and Norman drinking songs, advent antiphons, polyphony, medieval carols, Middle English lullabies and even a winter plainchant to ward off the black death!