Minster Minstrels – York’s youth early music ensemble

Minster Minstrels is York’s youth early music ensemble.  The group welcomes all instrumentalists and aims to explore, and to learn how to interpret, the wide variety of music from the Middle Ages, Renaissance and Baroque.  The group are also given the opportunity to play authentic instruments, which adds to the engaging element of weekly sessions. Minster Minstrels rehearse on Saturday mornings in term time, 9.30am – 12.15pm at Millthorpe School as part of York Music Centre.

Led by Directors Ian Hoggart and Ailsa Batters, the Minster Minstrels perform at least once each term, appearing regularly at York Early Music Festival and York Early Music Christmas Festival as well as taking part in performances and events throughout the year.

The Minster Minstrels have enjoyed performing with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment (OAE) as part of the OAE Watercycle Community Concert in December at the Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall, University of York.  On Saturday 21 March they took part in the European Day of Early Music alongside York Music Centre’s Girls’ Chamber Choir and Warwickshire’s Youth Viol Consort ‘Gutted’ in a morning workshop at the NCEM directed by Paul Gameson. In the afternoon they played to visitors at the Treasurer’s House.

In previous years, the Minster Minstrels have performed at the Merchant Adventurers’ 650th anniversary celebrations in York, at King’s Place in London, and as part of the York Massed Choir at the Music for Youth Schools Prom in the Royal Albert Hall in 2009.  Some took the parts of Cupids in the Theatre of the Ayre’s production of Venus and Adonis directed by Elizabeth Kenny in the 2010 York Early Music Festival.

For details about joining Minster Minstrels, please contact the NCEM on 01904 632220 or email minster.mintrels@ncem.co.uk.