In 2015, the 600th anniversary year of the Battle of Agincourt, Pegasus presented an hour-long programme of glorious choral music exploring Anglo-French relations over the ages. Our venue was the historic Charterhouse in the City of London, and the concert was performed as part of the Open House London weekend.
The fame of the Battle of Agincourt, in 1415, rings down through the ages, “not least to English ears”, in the words of Shakespeare’s Henry V. Four hundred years later, an even more decisive Anglo-Celtic battle took place less than 150 miles from Agincourt, at Waterloo, in 1815.
The programme used these two great historical events as bookends and reference points. Pegasus sang a selection of folksongs, or “chansons”, and sacred pieces written by both French and English composers. Amongst these included Claude Débussy’s popular Trois Chansons (setting texts by Charles d’Orléans, who was captured by the English at Agincourt), and Ah, Robyn by English composer William Cornysh, (which featured in the television adaptation of Wolf Hall.) The programme also included Jean Mouton’s Nesciens Mater and Clement Jannequin’s La Guerre, alongside works by Lheritier, Dufay and Josquin.