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Early vocal music ensemble Stile Antico brings its Christmas repertoire to St. Louis

Members of the group Stile Antico:  Helen Ashby, Katie Schofield, and William Dawes.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio.
Members of the group Stile Antico: Helen Ashby, Katie Schofield, and William Dawes.

When you think of the Christmas hits making the rounds on the radio today, your mind probably doesn’t immediately jump to Renaissance music. That’s what the British early vocal music ensemble Stile Antico is bringing to St. Louis tonight — selections from their Christmas music repertoire that hail back hundreds of years.

The group, which has previously been highlighted on NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concert series, will perform tonight in the Cathedral Basilica in the Central West End as part of the St. Louis Cathedral Concerts series. They’ve performed in the cathedral three times before and say it is one of their favorite venues to perform in — due to the acoustics.

Three members stopped by the St. Louis on the Air studio ahead of their performance to share stories from their global tour and share excerpts of music they’ll be performing tonight:

Will Dawes, a bass singer with the group, said that the unique aspect of the group is that it has no conductor and that the 12 members have equal weight in what is performed and how it is performed. That’s reflected in the group’s polyphonic style.

Tonight, the program focuses on German and Flemish music from the Renaissance era, said Katie Schofield, an alto with the group.

“We tend to focus not exclusively but mostly on religious music: music that was written for churches and great chapels and choirs that were professionally employed,” said Helen Ashby, a soprano. “There is a timeless feeling to this music that has been part of our repertoire so long.”

Related Event

What: St. Louis Cathedral Concerts Presents Stile Antico
When: Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 8:00 p.m.
Where: Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, 4431 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, MO 64144
More information.

St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary EdwardsAlex Heuer and Kelly Moffitt give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region. 

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Kelly Moffitt joined St. Louis Public Radio in 2015 as an online producer for St. Louis Public Radio's talk shows St. Louis on the Air.

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