The professional Danish choir Musica Ficta has from its founding been a flexible ensemble capable of applying distinctive interpretations to a variety of music. It has specialized in Danish music and in wider Renaissance repertory reflecting the interest of its director, composer and conductor Bo Holten. In the words of a biography of the choir, "With Musica Ficta, Holten has realised his vision of creating a highly flexible ensemble, where the classical Oxbridge early music ideal is combined with the warmth of the Scandinavian choral sound." Holten founded Musica Ficta in 1996 after working for some years as a guest conductor with the BBC Singers. The group's name comes from a practice (whose existence is disputed) in the singing of Renaissance music where accidentals or chromatic tones would be applied by the singers even though they ...
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Artist Biography

by James Manheim

The professional Danish choir Musica Ficta has from its founding been a flexible ensemble capable of applying distinctive interpretations to a variety of music. It has specialized in Danish music and in wider Renaissance repertory reflecting the interest of its director, composer and conductor Bo Holten. In the words of a biography of the choir, "With Musica Ficta, Holten has realised his vision of creating a highly flexible ensemble, where the classical Oxbridge early music ideal is combined with the warmth of the Scandinavian choral sound." Holten founded Musica Ficta in 1996 after working for some years as a guest conductor with the BBC Singers. The group's name comes from a practice (whose existence is disputed) in the singing of Renaissance music where accidentals or chromatic tones would be applied by the singers even though they were not notated; its sense is that music requires interpretation beyond the score, and that such interpretation may vary from place to place, situation to situation, and musician to musician.

Musica Ficta has nine singers, augmented occasionally for performances of larger works. The group's calendar of three to five performances per month often takes Musica Ficta to churches in medium-sized Danish cities, programming a repertoire that often includes Danish songs, Renaissance madrigals and sacred works, and contemporary pieces, including those by Holten himself. The group has recorded more than 20 albums, many of them for the Naxos and Dacapo labels. These have included two albums of Danish Christmas music, a 1997 recording of Ockeghem's difficult Missa Prolationum, and albums of madrigals by Don Carlo Gesualdo and (in Italian) Danish composer Mogens Peders√łn. In 2018 Musica Ficta released a recording of Orlande de Lassus' rarely heard setting of the St. Matthew Passion.