Sestina: Music for Christian IV of Denmark

Sestina Music: Music for Christian IV of Denmark

Tickets £15.00
The gorgeous choral sound of Sestina Music in our amazing acoustics - bliss!


Christian IV (1577-1648), Denmark's longest reigning monarch, was an ardent patron of culture - particularly that of architecture and music. His court drew Europe's most prominent musicians, resulting in an extraordinary period of musical flourishing in Copenhagen. Three Irish harpists resided at the infamous king's court, alongside German, Polish, Dutch, and British musicians who taught his children and provided entertainment for the Royal Household. 

Sestina Music presents an illustrious programme of music that celebrates Denmark’s complex and contradictory king. With works from popular composers such as court lutenist John Dowland, the programme also marks the 400th anniversary of the death of lesser-known Danish composer Mogens Pedersøn. Renowned historical harpist Dr Siobhán Armstrong joins the ensemble to introduce audiences to the music of her instrumental predecessors at court, Darby Scott and Charles O’Reilly. Explorations of Melchior Borchgrevinck's Giardino Novo collection (which includes madrigals from Claudio Monteverdi and Giaches de Wert) will also appear alongside the works of Hans Nielsen and the spy/soldier/gambist Tobias Hume.

For an evening of sonorous music not to be missed, join Sestina Music and its small ensemble of five singers, lute, harp and viola da gamba this Autumn. Explore the music of Denmark, Italy, Ireland, England and Scotland and the King who became portrayed as a symbol of Danishness, for better or for worse.



Soprano - Sarah Keating

Alto - Francesco Giusti

Tenor - Christopher Bowen and Max O'Neill

Bass - Henry Saywell


Harp - Siobhán Armstrong

Lute - Toby Carr


Viola da gamba - Sarah Groser


Musical director:

Mark Chambers


Sestina Music performs 'When David Heard'

Reviews for Sestina Music

- “It was a wonderful concert. Both singers and musicians gave us an amazing experience.”

(Review of Music of Celebration, April 2023)


- “This Messiah performance was a triumph. Fresh, edgy and intense. The cast of voices left no stone unturned. The audience were gripped and left the cathedral excited, knowing this was a special performance”

(Review of Messiah, April 2022)


- “What a superb performance as I have never heard or seen before. From the beginning the audience was lured into the setting with a great orchestra backing wonderful voices accompanied by subtle choreography which had your attention as the story was relayed. This performance was certainly in the present day setting. WOW. Very well done Sestina."

(Review of Messiah, April 2022)

About Sestina Music

Sestina Music is a dynamic young vocal ensemble based in Belfast with a reputation for excellence and innovation in early music. As well as profiling the very best of Irish and Northern Irish vocal talent, Sestina Music nurtures the next generation of aspiring professional singers in its mentoring and education programmes.

  • Arts Council NI

    Arts Council of Northern Ireland

    Supported by Lottery Project Funding from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland

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