Solomons Knot
© Gerard Collett

Solomon's Knot

»Known as much for vigour and risk-taking as for historical authenticity and intelligent programming« (The Financial Times) and described as a »serious kick up the baroque backside« (365 Bristol), the collective Solomon's Knot was founded in London in 2008 and is led by joint artistic directors James Halliday and Jonathan Sells.

The collective Solomon’s Knot was founded in London in 2008 and is led by joint artistic directors James Halliday and Jonathan Sells.

Their aim is to communicate the full power of music, especially that written before 1800, as directly as possible – the ensemble performs without conductor, and often from memory, creating what the Observer called »organic music-making at its most sophisticated«.  To explore new possibilities, Solomon’s Knot also collaborates with directors, composers, choreographers, sound and lighting designers, visual artists, and other ensembles. These have included Spira mirabilis, Sven Werner, James Hurley, Tim Carroll, Federay Holmes, Mira Calix, and Les Passions de l’Ame.

The flexible approach enables the ensemble to explore a wide range of repertoire, from the madrigals of Gesualdo set within a freshly-composed »sound sculpture garden«, to J.S. Bach’s Mass in B minor with 10 singers and 20 players. They are fascinated by the relationship of this »ancient« music to the »modern« eyes, ears, and minds.

In 2016 Sir John Eliot Gardiner invited Solomon’s Knot both to the Bachfest Leipzig (»the discovery of the festival« Leipziger Internet Zeitung) and his Barbican Bach Weekend in 2018. The collective has also appeared at the Aldeburgh Festival (»The Discovery of Bomarzo«), Händel-Festspiele Halle (Messiah), Newbury Spring Festival, Thüringer Bachwochen (Bach Johannes-Passion), Regensburger Tage Alter Musik (Linley Shakespeare Ode, Handel Messiah), Spitalfields Music Winter Festival (Bach Christmas Oratorio and Mass in B minor), London Handel Festival (Telemann »Die Tageszeiten«), and St John’s Smith Square Christmas Festival (Magnificats by Kuhnau and Bach, Bach Mass in B minor).

The ensemble’s first opera, the anonymous »l'Ospedale« (ca. 1650) at Wilton's Music Hall, London, was hailed as an »artistic triumph« (Classical Source) and will soon be released on DVD. Solomon’s Knot performs regularly on BBC Radio 3’s »In Tune«, and its concerts have been broadcast by Deutschlandradio Kultur.

As inaugural member of Aldeburgh Music’s Open Space residency scheme 2013-2017, Solomon’s Knot had the chance develop its artistic vision and collaborations with great freedom.  Future plans include the revival and live recording of the project »Christmas in Leipzig« in Nottingham and London’s Milton Court in December 2018, our Wigmore Hall debut, and a return to the Bachfest Leipzig in 2019 with the 1725 version of J.S. Bach’s Johannes-Passion.

Please contact maierartists for a current biography.

2019 and 2020

April 2019

J.S. Bach »Johannespassion«

Für acht Sänger und 14 Instrumentalisten

Anfang Mai 2019

Vier Motetten von J.S. Bach
für 8 acht Sänger und Orgel

Mitte Juni 2019

J.S. Bach »Johannespassion« in der Fassung von 1725

Mitte August 2019

Ein Tag im Leben von Henry Purcell
Musik vom Erwachen bis zur abendlichen Zecherei

Für vier Sänger und 12 Instrumentalisten

Mitte September 2019

Angst und Hoffnung

Musik von Purcell, Byrd, Tallis, Schein, Schütz und Kuhnau

Für 5 Sänger und Orgel

Mitte Oktober 2019

Ein Tag im Leben von Henry Purcell
Musik vom Erwachen bis zur abendlichen Zecherei

Für vier Sänger und 12 Instrumentalisten

Mitte Dezember 2019
Handel »Messiah«

22 Aufführende

1. Hälfte April 2020

J.S. Bach »Matthäuspassion«

Mitte Mai 2020

Sakrale Konzerte von Johann Christian und Johann Michael Bach

 u.a. »Ach das ich Wassers gnug« und »Wie bist denn, o Gott«

Juni 2020

J.S. Bach

Kantaten BWV 213, 214, 215

Solomon's Knot
© Gerard Collett
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Solomon's Knot
© Gerard Collett
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Solomon's Knot
© Gerard Collett
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Solomon's Knot
© Gerard Collett
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Archiv (Auszug)

- Solomons Knot - abgesagt

Stuttgart Musikfest, Stiftskirche
J.S.Bach Kantate BWV 214 & 215
Ensemble Solomon's Knot

- Solomon's Knot

Bachfest Leipzig
Bach: Johannes-Passion
Ltg. Jonathan Sells