In the 17th century, A Choice Collection of Ayres was a favourite title for compilations of domestic keyboard music that contained not only lessons for the harpsichord or virginals, but also, arrangements of popular songs and dances of the day.  In this programme, Peter Medhurst takes his cue from the past and presents his own choice collection of airs to give the audience a glimpse of lesser performed 16th, 17th and 18th century English musical miniatures, where fine tunes and dances – some even illustrated – are the order of the day.

Virginals or harpsichord and clavichord (supplied, tuned & transported by car) are used as solo instruments as well as for accompaniment in songs and arias.



Blow Thy Horn Hunter – W Cornyshe, La donne cella, La shy myze, The Queen of Bohemia’s Dompe – Anon, Eliza is the fairest Queen – R Johnson, His Golden Locks, Time Stands Still – J Dowland, Pavana Ph. Tr. and Galiarda – W Byrd, The Scottish Gigue – Anon, Beauty Retire – S Pepys, Suite in D minor – J Blow, Suite in G minor – H Purcell, There’s not a Swain on the Plain – H Purcell, Ground in G major – J Blow

If desired, Peter Medhurst may be joined by the following artistes: Philip Salmon tenor, Linda Howarth baroque flute & recorders, Rachel Gregory recorders, Penelope Cave harpsichord & virginals

John Blow – Ground in G major played on the harpsichord by Peter Medhurst

Henry Purcell – Rondo from Abdelazer played on the harpsichord by Peter Medhurst