For most of its history the English monarchy has maintained a variety of instrumental musicians on its staff in addition to the singers of the Chapel Royal. Musicians (and others) who are directly employed by the monarch are formally designated as being “in ordinary”: the adult members of the Chapel Royal choir are “Gentlemen-in-Ordinary”. Those employed on an occasional basis to perform with the monarch’s own musicians are thus described as “extra-ordinary”, both titles dating back to the very earliest records in the fifteenth century and before. The band assembled to accompany the Chapel Royal for this recording continues this tradition, a modern amalgam of their forebears referred to in the records as “the musicians extra-ordinary for the violins” and “the musicians extra-ordinary for the windy instruments”.
Emilia Benjamin (leader)
Cello (and continuo, tracks 11–13 and 15):
Katharina Spreckelsen (solo)
Andrew Gant (tracks 14, 22 and 23),
Joseph Nolan (all other tracks)