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Sound House
Although Francis Bacon, 17th century philosopher, statesman and visionary, is widely regarded as the father of modern science, his investigations into the nature of sound are little known.  Sound House explores some of the seemingly magical and musical phenomena that Bacon sought to explain. Playing some extraordinary instruments, including the bray harp and the little known viola bastarda, The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments will present music of the 17th century within a modern context of newly composed pieces, exploring astonishing aural effects and illusions that so intrigued our 17th century forbears. Read more here

The Longest Night
In Norway, the festival of Lussinatten celebrates the longest night of the year. Legend has it that on this night, Lussi, a feared enchantress, punishes anyone who dares to work and, from Lussinatten until Christmas, spirits, gnomes and trolls roam the Earth. The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments celebrates The Longest Night with devilish tunes, ancient Norwegian and English folk carols and other festive musical treats. Read more here

Nine Daies Wonder
We think of the publicity stunt as peculiar to our age but the antics of Will Kemp, a valued member of Shakespeare’s company, prove otherwise. In 1599 he Morris danced from London to Norwich and published an account of his epic journey, ‘Nine Daies Wonder’. Its purpose was to publicise his unusual adventure. We celebrate the ‘Nine Daies Wonder’ that was Will Kemps claim to fame with raucous dance tunes and more refined music of the Elizabethan age. Steven Player, dancer, actor, comedian and musician, will play the part of Will Kemp while the Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments brings a wealth of experience in historically informed performance to this little-known piece of our history. Read more

The Ministry of Angels
In this programme we explore music associated with angels, the maverick and fallen as well as the divine and perfect. Playing some of the instruments that appear in descriptions and depictions of angels through the ages, as well as other strange and ethereal sounding instruments, we present traditional tunes, dances, songs and carols in a celebration of these heavenly creatures. Read more

La Société des Instruments Anciens
A recreation of a concert given by our predecessors, La Société des Instruments Anciens, who gave a series of historical performances in the Salon Pleyel in Paris in the years around 1900. We play the instruments used in the original programme - hurdy gurdy, viola d'amore, viola da gamba and harpsichord - in a programme of old favourites and fascinating oddities from the 18th century. Read more