Lyubov Zolotova & The Minne Singers

Bringing together educational programs and high class musical entertainment

“Medieval English music flowed down the wide stairs of the British Ambassador’s residence on a rare warm and sunny summer evening in July. Guests arrived and were serenaded by the stunning Lyubov Zolotova and the Minne Singers performing some really quite hypnotising music. Lyubov’s searching, clear voice, backed by seemingly simple but actually highly complex lute and flute playing by Nadezhda Petrushina, hand drum, mini tambourine with spoon playing by Makar Khavrun, and keyboard by Francisca Khavrun created an extraordinary atmosphere…” 

John Harrison, Russia Knowledge

“It was really interactive. I have never seen anything similar before. It was a great introduction to the history of the English language, it was like going through time, travelling with a time machine. It was fabulous. ”

Kate Wiley, Cargolux Airlines

“It was absolutely magnificent! Somewhere in the middle of it I felt as if we were in a medieval castle waiting for a feast with roasted pork and goblets of ale to start..))) You are the best!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!” 

Anna

ABOUT US

Lyubov Zolotova & The Minne Singers is an innovative creative learning project.  We believe in meaningful artistic experience, and learning through music. True learning happens when our emotions are fully engaged.  We thus aspire to create unique educational & entertainment projects that are focused around English language learning,  as well as delivering unique talks on various music- and language-related subjects. Some of our leading educational programs include:

  • The History of the English Language Through Songs & Poetry
  • The History of Christmas Carols
  • English Dialects Through Songs

Along with educational projects, we do exquisite musical entertainment programs.  We take special interest in ethnic traditions of different cultures, and build our programs around folk/ethnic instrumental and vocal pieces. We aspire to revive authentic sound and spirit of the music performed, and use a variety of ethnic instruments for the task, including the Celtic harp, recorders, ethnic drums etc.

We have performed at a variety of venues, including the British Ambassador’s Residence in Moscow, The Center of Russian Culture in Luxemburg, American Cultural Center in Moscow, Native Speakers Café as well as at many other spaces.

OUR PROGRAMS

Educational programs

The History of the English Language Through Songs and Poetry

If you want to learn fascinating facts about the evolution of the English language, hear and learn some very old and exotic English songs, then this program is for you!  Our lead singer and English language coach, Lyubov Zolotova, will give you the key milestones of the history of the English language and together with the band will illustrate them with authentic songs and poetry of different times.  We will then go through the peculiarities of grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation of Old, Middle and Modern English. You will find out:

  • Why the 11-12th cc. English sounded more like German
  • Why some English words have their French “twin”
  • When they gave up using “thee” and “thou”… and many more fascinating facts!

This is a rare opportunity to hear some of the oldest English songs and poetry surviving, some of the pieces are over 700 years old! Minimum English language required: intermediate. Program last for appr. 1.5 hours Check out this short video from one of our performances:

This is a rare opportunity to hear some of the oldest English songs and poetry surviving, some of the pieces are over 700 years old! Minimum English language required: intermediate. Program last for appr. 1.5 hours Check out this short video from one of our performances:

The English of Shakespeare Through Songs & Poetry

The program explores Shakespeare’s contribution into the English language in an engaging format, combining a talk, music and poetry recital.

You will find out:

  • how Shakespeare made up new words
  • which idiomatic phrases and expressions he coined that are still in wide use today
  • fascinating facts about the English grammar of Shakespeare’s time
  • what Shakespeare’s English sounded like
  • where you can see authentic Shakespeare’s plays today.

You will also hear songs from Shakespeare’s plays that will be presented to you by our band, as well as extracts from some of his famous plays recited in reconstructed pronunciation of late XVI – early XVII cc.

The History of Christmas Carols

This special program  offers you a unique insight into the world of rare and even exotic Christmas carols of different countries and times from the 12th to the 20th centuries! You will find out how the tradition of Christmas carols and caroling originated and evolved throughout centuries. You will find out:

  • What Christmas carols have in common with pagan songs and rituals
  • What Nativity hymns sounded like back in early Middle ages

…and many fascinating facts from the history of Christmas carol

You will hear:

  • a rare carol of the 12th century performed in Latin
  • the original Huron Carol composed by a Jesuite missionary for the Huron/Wendat tribe of North America in the 17th century
  • a heavenly German Christmas carol Maria durch ein Dornwald ging
  • energetic Ukranian kolyadki and much more!

Suggested minimum level of English: intermediate. Program lasts for appr. 1.5 hours.

English Dialects Through Songs

This program offers you an insight into the world of regional  dialects of the English language, from  Queen’s English  to Scottish, Liverpool and the famous Cockney dialect of common Londoners. We talk you through the specific features of each dialect and how it came about and then illustrate them with authentic songs from each region.

Entertainment programs

The Slavic Chants

Slavic folk music and, in particular, Russian, Ukrainian and South Slavic (Bulgarian, Serbian etc.) hold a very special place in our repertoire. A typical program of this kind will be a mixture of traditional folk/ethnic instrumental and vocal music. We don’t typically perform popular folk music, though we will happily do so upon request. Please see this short video from one of our recent performances

Old English music: from 13th to 19th cc

To set an elegant mood for your event, we will happily perform a variety of instrumental and vocal English music of various genres and times. This can be played in a soft, “lounge” kind of style as background music, or as a full-scale chamber concert for your guests. The songs will range from 13th to 19th cc.

The Christmas spirit: Carols, Yule Songs, Kolyadki…

Traditions of carol signing were widespread in many cultures. However, while English carol singing tradition is fairly well-known and popularized in the world, traditions of other countries are left in the shadow. We inspire to bring together a variety of carols from different countries, these include England, Spain, Russia, Ukraine, Serbia etc. This is something special to entertain your guests with around Christmas and New Year time. We are also happy to focus on a particular tradition upon request.

Love Songs of all Times and Cultures

Some of the most beautiful songs of all times are, of course, love songs. We have put together some of the most beautiful love songs of different times and peoples to show all the richness of ethnic traditions embodied in songs about love. You will hear, among others, Indian, Chinese, Greek, Russian, Ukrainian, English, Spanish, and Turkish songs. Most of these would be folk or folk-based pieces. This program will be perfect to entertain guests on St. Valentine’s day, or any other occasion!

Customized programs

We are happy to put together a musical/entertaining program tailored to your needs. Let us know what your expectations and preferences are, and we will build an individual program for you. Please not that we need at least 2 weeks to put together and rehearse a customized program, so book in advance!

THE BAND

Lyubov Zolotova

Lead singer, bilingual English language coach (English/Russian)

Francisca Khavrun

Vocals, keyboard, recorders

Nadezhda Petrushina

Celtic harp, recorders, ethnic instruments

Makar Khavrun

Percussions, ethnic drums

VIDEO

PRESS ABOUT US

Medieval English music flowed down the wide stairs of the British Ambassador’s residence on a rare warm and sunny summer evening in July. The ‘Chevening Summer fest’ on July 13th was underway. Guests arrived and were serenaded by the stunning Lyubov Zolotova and the Minne Singers performing some really quite hypnotising music…

John Harrison

Russia Knowledge

…Lyubov’s clear voice perfectly captured that Russian upturn at the end of the lines, and the audience beat along in time with their fingers, heads, and eventually broke out into dances during the more rhythmic numbers. Singing traditional Russian music to expatriates does not always work. This time it did, brilliantly. Thank you!

John Harrison

Russia Knowledge

INTERVIEW WITH THE BAND FOR RUSSIA KNOWLEDGE

What was the idea behind the band? Why did you choose Medieval English music to be a major part of your repertoire?

Lyubov: The idea behind the band, essentially, was to combine music with language education. I am a bilingual English language coach but music continues to be my big passion in life. For some time, I had been thinking of a way to create programs that would combine language education and music. This is how our leading program, The History of the English Language Through Songs and Poetry, came about.    Read more

TESTIMONIALS

NEWS & UPCOMING EVENTS

November 9, 2018. The Brits in Russia: From Days of Yore to Present Times.

St. Andrews Church, Moscow, 19.30
An interactive lecture, concert & a church tour

Don’t miss our brand new program where we will take you on another exciting trip through time! You will learn why and when the
English first came to Russia, and explore their contribution into the Russian culture and society, hear an insightful talk about the history of the British in Russia and why they kept coming here throughout centuries. And of course, you will hear lots and lots of beautiful English and Scottish music performed by our band!

Special highlight of the tour: you will get a unique chance to climb up the St. Andrews tower and hear a fascinating story about the church and some of its most outstanding  congregants!

Tickets are available at the door and at https://english-marathon.timepad.ru/event/790664/

May 26, 2018. The History of the British in Moscow. Old English Court, Moscow 

This new program explores the history of the British community in Moscow from the first-ever foreign embassy in the heart of Russia’s capital to railways, Sherlock and football – the British trace in Moscow is still very much alive and the cultural contribution and cross-influence are profound. We will take you on a trip through time. You will get to see some architectural landmarks associated with the British in Moscow, like St. Andrews Anglican church, the 19th century “British gentlemen club”, the 16th century Old English Court etc, and hear an insightful talk about the history of the British in Moscow and why they kept coming to Russia throughout centuries. To book tickets go to https://www.belcantofund.com/actions/detail.php?ID=6519

May 5, 2018.  The Language of Shakespeare Through Songs. St. Andrews Church, Moscow 

We are happy to present our brand new program, The Language of Shakespeare Through Songs. The program explores Shakespeare’s contribution into the English language in an engaging format, combining a talk, music and poetry recital. To book tickets, please follow http://bit.ly/skyteach2

March 31, 2018. Interactive lecture at Skyteach Language Festival 

We are happy to annouce that we have been invited to perform at Skyteach English language Festival and deliver our interactive lecture on the History of the English Language Through Songs & Poetry. To register, please follow www.conference.skyteach.ru

January 20, 2018. Chamber concert at St. Andrews Church, Moscow

To prolong the Christmas season, come join us at our special program,The History of Christmas Carols  to be performed at an exquisite venue of St. Andrews Church in Moscow.

October 27, 2017. Chamber concert at St. Andrews Church, Moscow 

Don’t miss our interactive lecture on the History of the English Language through Songs and Poetry at the beautiful Moscow space of St. Andrews Church, Voznesensky pereulok, 8.  To book tickets, please follow St. Andrews’ Concert

CONTACT US

To book concerts and programs, please contact us at lzolotova@gmail.com or leave a request.

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