The Annual William Byrd Festival returns to Portland this year, featuring services sung by Cantores in Ecclesia, directed by Blake Applegate, lectures given by leading scholars Kerry McCarthy, William Mahrt and Katie Bank, and illustrated recitals by ensembles directed by internationally-renowned Byrd experts, Ross Duffin and William Dawes. Mark Williams, Informator Choristarum and Fellow in Music at Magdalen College, Oxford, returns to Portland to give a recital on the organ of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, and direct the closing concert which will include a number of Byrd’s most famous motets as we mark the 400th anniversary of his death in 1623.

Mark Williams, Informator Choristarum at Magdalen College, Oxford and Artistic Director of the Byrd Festival, writes that ‘This year’s Festival sees all the usual fixtures, including lectures, services and concerts, plus some exciting extras, including two short illustrated recitals, led by Byrd experts, Ross Duffin (of Case Western University) and William Dawes (of Oxford University, and one of the founding members of the early music ensemble, Stile Antico). In this anniversary year, as we mark 400 years since the death of the composer who has been the focus of our festival for over 25 years, I greatly look forward to this annual celebration of some of the most beautiful music to come out of England in the Renaissance era.’
The full program is attached here and further details may be found at

Tickets for the concerts on August 4th, 16th & 20th are available online at, or at the door. All other events are free admission with a freewill offering.

Many thanks to all who attended our Byrd at the Belle fundraising event at the Victorian Belle Mansion! The weather was beautiful and it was a joyous afternoon! Sarah Wright took some great photos that can be viewed HERE.

If you were unable to attend but would still like to support this year's festival, follow this LINK. View the full 2023 Byrd Festival schedule HERE.

Byrd Festival video appeal from Artistic Director Mark Williams: