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The Salzburg connection

SalzburgThe School of Music is bringing a little-known work by one of Mozart’s most illustrious predecessors  to Llandaff Cathedral.

Cardiff University’s Chamber Choir and Chamber Orchestra will perform the UK premiere of Heinrich Biber’s ‘Marian Vespers’ at a concert of church music on 4 May 2012.

The programme is a celebration of Salzburg, a city forever linked with Mozart, who lived and worked there.  But the city had a rich musical heritage going back over a century before Mozart. Heinrich Biber (1644 - 1704), one of Mozart’s most regarded predecessors, was active there as a violinist and a composer during the second half of the seventeenth century.

John Hugh Thomas, Cardiff University conductor, said: “Marian Vespers is a fascinating work which, surprisingly, still remains unpublished. For this concert a performing edition, based on the original score and parts held by Salzburg University, is being used.

 “We believe that this will be the first time it has ever been performed outside Austria and it is certainly the first time it will have been heard live in the UK.

“In addition to the Marian Vespers, composed in 1693, the University Chamber Choir and Orchestra will perform Mozart’s Coronation Mass K.317 which dates from 1779. Both works received their first performance at Salzburg Cathedral, where many of Mozart’s liturgical works were first performed.”

Heinrich Biber was arguably the greatest violinist in the German speaking countries in the seventeenth century and his works for solo violin were known and imitated throughout Europe. His music is stull widely performed and recorded today and continues to challenge even the finist violinists.

The concert will take place at 7.30pm on Friday 4 May 2012. Tickets (£8, £5) can be purchased by calling 03700 101051 for a bi-lingual box office or online at
For more information on the Cardiff University Concert Series, please visit