A different concert experience
"Inclusive... non-pretentious... I really wish all “classical” concerts were like this”
Attila the Stockbroker on our Christmas concert in Worthing 2018 in The Morning Star
The Telling attempts to break new ground, where new writing/music collide.
In 2019 we undertook 28 performances & 4 public workshops. Between 27 March 2020 up to late April 2021 our mezzo Ariane Prüssner delivered online singing workshops to 45-70 participants each week. We have performed at Buxton International Music Festival, Music at Oxford (3 performances) Little Missenden Festival, Brighton Early Music Festival (4 performances), Keele Concerts Society, Kingston Early Music, Totnes Early Music Society – and working with other groups including The Sixteen, we spearheaded our own Liverpool Early Music Festival.
We record for First Hand Records: our first CD Gardens of Delight was selected for BBC Music Magazine playlist for April 2019 and our most recent CD Secret Life of Carols reached #25 in the Classical Charts in December 2019. David Mellor called it his "absolute favourite" 2019 Christmas Album and it was in The Guardian, BBC Music Magazine, The Daily Mail and Classic FM's “Best Christmas Albums” lists.
"imaginative and eclectic"
The Guardian, Fiona Maddocks on Secret Life of Carols CD
"Siren-like voices ... an ardour to these performances that is hard to resist."
BBC Music Magazine on Gardens of Delight CD
“unexpected delight from beginning to end, and really strongly recommended”
David Mellor, Classic FM/Daily Mail on Secret Life of Carols CD
Our Artistic Director is the playwright, singer & producer Clare Norburn: her new writing uses live music in innovative ways.
Our regular director Nicholas Renton has a rich TV portfolio including collaborations with the great TV screenwriter Andrew Davies, eg the BAFTA-Nominated Wives & Daughters for BBCTV.
Our pool of musicians consists of leading early music performers including regular members Joy Smith, Giles Lewin, Jean Kelly, Clare Norburn and Kaisa Pulkkinen and the late great mezzo, Ariane Prüssner.
Our pool of actors includes leading names of stage & screen: Alec Newman, Rachael Stirling, Teresa Banham, Suzanne Ahmet and Anna Demetriou.
The Telling takes shows around the UK, establishing residencies in places where there is little or no touring, eg Wolverhampton, Hastings, Barrow and Hounslow.
During 2020/21 the Telling received critical praise for their online arthouse films of plays with music. Most notably, Vision by Clare Norburn that follows the extraordinary medieval Abbess Hildegard of Bingen played by Teresa Banham (RSC/Shared Experience) which was selected by The Guardian’s Tim Ashley as one of the Top 3 online summer music highlights alongside the Salzburg and Edinburgh Festivals.
"An austerely beautiful piece ... it really is wonderful, so do try and catch it."
The Guardian, Tim Ashley
Love in the Lockdown also by Clare Norburn staring Alec Newman & Rachael Stirling is our most recent online play with music, rehearsed and filmed entirely over Zoom or on actor & musicians' mobiles/recording devices from their own homes.
"an exploration of the boundaries between art & life ... intelligent … does more than reflect overfamiliar pandemic situations back at us ... it finds new terrain"
The Guardian, Arifa Akbar
★★★★★ "at least as appealing as Tennant & Sheen in the BBC’s Staged"
★★★★ "There have been plenty of Zoom plays… but perhaps none so classy and assured as Clare Norburn’s episodic series"
The Reviews Hub
Photo: Robert Piwko
Thanks to our Funders
The Secret Life of Carols tours 2019 and 2020 are funded by Arts Council England.
In Retreat is funded by Arts Council England’s Emergency Response Fund and crowdfunders.
#TuneTag and Online R&D of two new shows & performance of Unsung Heroine are funded by Arts Council England’s Emergency Response Fund.
The Empowered Women tour (Vision, Into the Melting Pot and Unsung Heroine) is funded by Arts Council England, The Golsoncott Foundation, Unity Theatre Trust and The Marchus Trust.
The Marchus Trust.
The Hildegard and Beatriz de Dia shows (Vision and Unsung Heroine), including filming of the online versions, are supported by The Ambache Charitable Trust which is active in raising the profile of women composers.
#HomeTour is funded by Arts Council England's Emergency Response Fund, The Sylvia Waddilove Foundation and The Golsoncott Foundation.