The Northern Consort
In 2002, Vincent van Ballegooijen (oboe) and Hanneke Wieringa (violin) began giving themed concerts on a small stage in Groningen. For many years, together with countless colleagues – all playing on historic instruments – they have presented, every month, music from the early 17th to the early 19th centuries. The concerts have always been combined with a story, a dance, images or poetry. The Northern Consort is still performing in this way, twenty years on – although the original small stage has grown to include a wide variety of performance spaces – and they have created a stable group of colleagues around them. Constant threads across the decades have been their love of the music itself and of playing together, and the thematic approach that renders their concerts refreshing and accessible. The last few years have seen them perform in schools, for refugees and the homeless, in care homes for the aged, and at healthcare locations.