William Hunt

William Hunt was a founder member of the viol consort Fretwork and for many years a member of the chamber ensemble London Baroque. He has played viol and violone with many leading period instrument ensembles in the UK, including the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Taverner Consort and for several years as principal violone with the Dunedin Consort. He has held teaching posts at music conservatories, including Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and the Royal College of Music and has also directed residential courses and workshops both in the UK and in Europe

In 1989 he launched Fretwork Editions, a specialist publisher of viol-related music, of which he is director and general editor. A keen interest in English music for voices and viols led him in September 2017 to embark on doctoral research, recently completed, at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire into the performance of the pre-Restoration consort verse anthem linked to a series of recordings under the title ‘In Chains of Gold’, of which he is artistic director. This began with the first complete recording of the consort anthems of Orlando Gibbons and was followed by an anthology of anthems by William Byrd and his contemporaries, including the relatively unknown Edmund Hooper — a principal focus of his research. The third and last CD in the series was recorded in August 2023, featuring large anthems by Thomas Tomkins and several others by leading composers of the period. All three have brought new thinking about historical voice-types and sonorities to bear on a largely neglected repertoire.