The Australian Chamber Choir’s latest concert, Survivors of the London Plagues, will be performed under social distancing conditions in Mandeville Hall, Toorak, and streamed live to audiences around the country thanks to Melbourne Digital Concert Hall. The choir’s manager Elizabeth Andersonand director Douglas Lawrence spoke to Limelightabout the concert, which will feature eight singers – the ACC 8 – performing music by William Byrd, Orlando Gibbons, John Dowland and Henry Purcell and more.

Douglas Lawrence Douglas Lawrence. Photo courtesy of Australian Chamber Choir

How did the idea to program a concert around survivors of the plague in London come together?

EA:Douglas and I usually work together to develop programs. We decided that to generate some income for our singers during the COVID-19 crisis, we would live-stream a concert once a month. Douglas thought that a series of programs, each with a national theme would work well, and started working on a program of English music. He gave me his first draft and I thought there might be a correlation between the works he had chosen and outbreaks of the Bubonic Plague in England. There really were many outbreaks of Bubonic Plague, so any Elizabethan composer...